Fine Japanese art and tea implements

A Muromachi Period Scroll with Depiction of the Daruma

A Muromachi Period Scroll with Depiction of the Daruma


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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Japanese: Paintings: Pre 1492: Item # 1457721

Please refer to our stock # TRC220406 when inquiring.
Kyoto Ceramics and Fine Art
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Kamigamo District
Kyoto, Japan


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A classic renditions of the Bodhidharma (more commonly known as the Daruma in Japan), this scroll from the Muromachi period (1336-1573) depicts the legendary monk who famously introduced Buddhism to China. Originally from India, he is said to have traveled across the Himalayas on foot to share the wisdom and knowledge from his studies of meditation which later spread to Japan, Korea, and other parts of the world. In Japanese Buddhist paintings from Edo to the present, the Daruma is often seen as stern-faced, stoic, and rather haggard and world-weary in appearance. The more gentle expression and well-kempt appearance of the Daruma here suggests a version more true to Chinese painting from an earlier time. For a classic example of 13th century painting similar in appearance, see the Japanese national treasure “Red Robed Bodhidharma” inscribed by Lánxī Dàolóng: https://www.tsiosophy.com/2012/09/tea-and-bodhidharma/

The text on the scroll reads:

zaku seikō hekigan-jyō [long a success in the land of the blue-eyed]

seirai soi ichigen-nai [coming from the west, spreading the teachings without a word]

ryōchi sawa Liang Wang sho [leaving his mark on the land of Emperor Liang]

kinko soshō hakai-sō [from days of old, the name of a defeated monk]

katsute Ryūhō Shinkei so sanshō [in praise of the former Ryūhō Shinkei (stamp)]

In fine antique condition, this piece is 181cm tall and 38.5cm wide with the artwork on the scroll being 102cm tall and 37cm wide. It come in what appears to be its original box with an inscription, and, in the box there are several hand-written papers that add context to this important work. Contact us for more information including transcriptions and translations of these documents along with the lettering on the box.