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Kakunen Tsuruoka


three red songbirds on branch

ink and color on light brown paper; the entire background painted darker brown; signed Kakunen ga with artist's square seal Kakunen, with oval Tsuruoka family seal on verso, n.d., ca. 1920s

6 7/8 by 24 7/8 in., 17.5 by 63.3 cm

This appears to be a grouping of summer tanagers that are known to inhabit portions of southern United States in the winter, migrating to South America in the winter. The rosy-red plumage belongs to adult male birds, while the yellowish-brown bird is a female.

The pooling of green, black, and brown pigment on the surface of the tree branch and leaves a classic example of the use of tarashikomi (lit. 'dripping in''), a technique of manipulating layers of wet paint and ink which is associated with traditional Rinpa-style painting. The faint sheen on some of the darkest areas hint that Kakunen may have incorporated a bit of lacquer or some other viscous material.

price: Sold


Scholten Japanese Art is open Monday - Friday, and some Saturdays, 11am - 5pm, by appointment.

Contact Katherine Martin at
(212) 585-0474 or email
to schedule a visit.

site last updated
May 13, 2019

Scholten Japanese Art
145 West 58th Street, suite 6D
New York, New York 10019
ph: (212) 585-0474
fx: (212) 585-0475