Mori Bunrei (dates unknown). Hanging scroll with painting of insects simulating a samurai traveling with his entourage to or from the capital. A butterfly, suzumushi, praying mantises, yellow jackets and grass hoppers are traveling in a line, carrying flowers and grasses for poles, a hive and berries for luggage. Black ink and colors on silk. Signed Bunrei; two red seals reading bun and rei. Japan, mid 19th / second half 19th century.
Painted area: 14-½ x 20-1/8 inches. Total height: 461½ inches.
Painting with some light stains, otherwise in excellent condition, mounting damaged.
Mori Bunrei was the son and pupil of Mori Ippo (1798–1871), the Shijo painter. His style and technique closely follow those of his father’s.
A very similar painting by Nishiyama Hoen (1804-1867) is in the British Museum. This type of painting is typical for the Maruyama/Shijo school and could have originated with Maruyama Okyo.