Reproduction of "Fujin-Raijin-zu Byobu"Kyoto Company's Precision Printing for Rimpa School's 400th Anniversary13 January 2015 - Tradition/Culture
In conjunction with the festival commemorating the 400th anniversary of the Rimpa School this year, the art printing company "Benrido" in Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto, is planning to produce and exhibit a precision replica of Korin Ogata's masterpiece "Fujin-Raijin-zu Byobu," or folding screen featuring the Wind God and Thunder God, an Important Cultural Property owned by Tokyo National Museum. Collotype printing, a traditional technique with exceptional reproducibility, will be used. The company planned it to enable close-up appreciation of the impressive masterpiece that symbolizes the Rimpa School's lineage in Kyoto which is connected to the school.
This year marks the 400th anniversary of Koetsu Honami, the Rimpa School's founder, opening an artistic community in Takagamine, located in the northern part of Kyoto. The village was bestowed on him by Ieyasu Tokugawa. In connection to that, Benrido drew up the plan to reproduce and exhibit the piece, calling it the "Homecoming" of the "Fujin-Raijin-zu Byobu" folding screen, which is kept in Tokyo. The company has reproduced numerous precious cultural properties such as "Shoso-in Monjo," or historical documents from Todai-ji Temple's Shoso-in treasure house, Nara Prefecture.
"Fujin-Raijin-zu Byobu" folding screen which Korin Ogata reproduced based on Sotatsu Tawaraya's painting was originally one of two sides of the same screen along with "Natsu Aki Kusa-zu Byobu," or folding screen featuring plants of summer and autumn, painted by Hoitsu Sakai from the collection of the Tokyo National Museum. However, they are now separately mounted for the protection of the artistic works. Benrido reproduced the "Natsu Aki Kusa-zu Byobu" folding screen two years ago and will recreate the original combined folding screen using this new replication.
Collotype printing is a technique using plate glasses on which an image has been specially hardened. The technique requires great care on one side, but it can express coloring and texture close to the original. In the near future, the company will organize an executive committee and finish the production this autumn. This replica will be donated to public exhibition facilities, with the intention of it being lent to schools, or used as furnishings when entertaining guests from foreign countries. The company will solicit donations toward the production costs, with the goal of raising 10 million yen. Benrido said, "We expect that the masterpieces, which are filled with the Rimpa School’s attractiveness on the front and back sides, will be an opportunity for people in Kyoto to become familiar with a form close to that of those days."(translated by Galileo, Inc.)