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Nukina Kaioku (Suô) (1778-1863)
Autumn landscape
Signed: Suô
Seals: Kanboku Seifuku, Hôchiku Jôsha, Komo onore (tp)
Technique: sumi and pink on paper 126.7 x 30.3
Date: 1854
Mounting: blue grey damask
194 x 45.1
Box: inscribed double box (with auction label)
Condition: very good

岩邊樹色含風冷 / 石上泉聲带雨秋  
The hues of the trees by the rock retain the coolness of the wind,
The splashing of spring water on the stones contains the autumn rain.

Couplet from a verse by the Tang poet Song Zhiwen (656–712)

Kaioku was born as the second son of a martial arts teacher in the service of the Hachisuka domain in Awa Province. Although he was educated in the family tradition of martial arts, his weak constitution allowed him to follow Confucian studies, poetry and calligraphy.

After a brief training in Kanô painting he went to Nagasaki to study Nanga painting under the Zen-monk Hidaka Tetsuô (1791-1871). He chose to be a Confucian scholar for which he studied in several parts of Japan for many years of his life. For three years he studied calligraphy. He copied the style of the 9th century monk Kôbô Daishi permanently and mastered all the styles of calligraphy. After the death of Rai San'yô (1780-1832), Kaioku became the most celebrated bunjin artist in Kyoto.

In each of the editions of the Heian Jinbutsu shi from 1813 until 1852 Kaioku is mentioned twice as a poet as well as a calligrapher. In 1811 he settled in Kyoto where in 1828 he finally established the Suseidô, his own school.

Rosenfield ‘99 B.68
Berry & Morioka ’08 p. 287-88
Kato '98 (Chapter 1) # 94-102
Hempel p. 165
Roberts p. 64
Araki p. 1580 ff.