By Kanō Hideyori
1 six-fold screen
Color on paper
Muromachi -Azuchi-Momoyama period/16th century
Tokyo National Museum
The seal impressed on the painting indicates that this masterpiece was created by Kanô Hideyori (dates unknown), who was, according to different theories, either the second son or the grandson of Motonobu (1476-1559).
The precincts depicted at the deep right of the painting are those of Jingo-ji Temple in Takao, Kyoto, while the snow-covered path at the deep left can be understood to be the road leading to Atago Shrine, and so the painting is generally called Maple Viewing at Takao. In the foreground, the screens portray monks and well-dressed men and women enjoying food and drink beneath brilliant maples by the shores of the Kiyotaki River in Takao, renowned for its autumn foliage, and the bridge leading to the temple. The crimson of the maple leaves, scattered throughout the panels, distribute an abundance of color to the entire picture. Yet the overall color tone is somber, creating a restrained, calm atmosphere.
While autumnal motifs dominate the painting, the inclusion of the winter view shows that this composition belongs to the tradition of Four Seasons paintings begun in the Heian period (794-1185). It is thought that another screen, now lost, depicted spring and summer scenes.