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Calligraphy Box

Ogata Korin, Japanese, (1658–1716)

Creation date: 20th century
Creation place: Japan

Other Information

Type: Lacquer Box
Medium and Support: Lacquered wood
Credit Line: Gift of Eugene and Marian Gabrych
Accession Number: 2002.187.a-.f
Dimensions: 2 1/2 in. x 9 in. x 10 in. (6.35 cm x 22.86 cm x 25.4 cm)


Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Gabrych, Fallbrook, California ( - December 28, 2002)

San Diego Museum of Art, San Diego, California (December 28, 2002 - )

Label Copy

Asia Crossroads installation
October 2003
These two richly textured boxes are decorated with similar but not identical gold relief designs of naturalistic chrysanthemums climbing over a bamboo support. Leaves inset with mother of pearl shine with a white light, while others are silver or rusty brown, tinged with black lacquer. Both boxes are signed “Korin” on the interior of the lids followed by a Korin seal. Ogata Korin (1658-1716) was a renowned painter and lacquer artist associated with a decorative style that came to be known as “Rimpa” (school of Korin). The bold and witty Rimpa style was favored by the newly enfranchised merchant class during the Edo period. Sakai Hoitsu (1771-1828) revived Korin’s style in the 19th century. Hoitsu published many of Korin’s designs and made them available to a wide circle of craftsmen who carried on the Rimpa legacy. A distinctive feature of Rimpa calligraphy boxes is the organization of the interior to place the inkstone and water dropper to the left, leaving one undivided space on the right to hold brushes. This writing box, however, preserves the more traditional arrangement with the inkstone in the middle and two side brush trays.
Last Updated: 5/8/2018

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