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Plum Branches

The twisted branches of the plum tree, with new growth emerging from old limbs, created a challenge for painters. An ill-formed line was not just an indication of poor draftsmanship, but also of deficient moral character. Donkyō lived in Kyoto most of his life, but his choice of subject and style point to his admiration for Chinese painting.

Donkyō (signed Unkei)
Japanese, died 1810
Plum Branches
18th century
Ink on paper
26 7/16 x 11 ¼ in. (67.1 x 28.5 cm)
26 ¼ x 11 ¼ in. (66.6 x 28.5 cm)
Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Gifts of Charles Page, 69.31.1 and .2