Waterfalls, a prominent natural feature in a country as mountainous as Japan, enjoy a reputation as sacred places. From the post-Heian period to the present, they have been a destination for ascetic priests who have submitted the austerity of sitting beneath waterfalls. In Japanese art, the treatment of waterfalls has both religious and secular dimensions. In a secular context, the landscape painting tradition that flourished in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries made much of waterfalls. In the Edo period, meanwhile, the treatment of waterfalls reflected the development of new art formats as well as an expanded interest in domestic tourism that led to visits of famous falls. (Source: Merrily Baird. Symbols of Japan).
Keika Kanashima (1892-1974)
In 1911 became a pupil of Takeuchi Seiho. From 1918 an exhibitor at government shows; after 1945 showed with the Nitten. In 1934 served as juror for the Teiten. In 1952 received the Education Minister's Prize for Fostering the Arts, in 1953, the Japan Art Academy Prize. Good painter of kachoga and animals, working in a light, pleasant manner with certain modern touches. (Roberts, Dictionary of Japanese Artists, p. 67)
Ink on paper
112.8 x 36.1 cm (44 ½ x 14 ¼ in.)
Mounting: 199.5 x 38.5 cm (78 ½ x 15 in.)
Original box (tomobako)