Jul 8, 2014
Jul 8, 2014
Jul 8, 2014

Demon Intoning the Name of the Buddha (Oni no nenbutsu)

Demon Intoning the Name of the Buddha (Oni no nenbutsu)


Hanging scroll, ink and color on paper

Painting only: 59.2 x 22.1 cm (23 5/16 x 8 11/16 in.); Including mounting: 126.4 x 33 cm (49 3/4 x 13 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1982.26



Images like this one that depicts a demon in the guise of an itinerant monk intoning the name of the Buddha are called Otsu-e, or "Otsu paintings." Otsu-e were made as souvenirs for travelers passing through the station of Otsu along the Tokaido, the route stretching from Edo (modern-day Tokyo) to Kyoto. Realized through a combination of woodblock printing, rapid brushstrokes, embellishment with color and gold pigments by stencil or by hand, the earliest Otsu-e, produced in the 17th century, were Buddhist and Shinto icons. Later images included figures popular from Kabuki plays, as well as scenes illustrating parables.

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