The Cherry Blossom Centennial celebrates the 100th anniversary of the planting of the first trees —a gift of Japan to the United States—in the Tidal Basin on March 27, 1912. (The Festival was first held in 1935.) In honor of this event, The National Gallery of Art is hosting an extraordinary loan from the Imperial Household.

Colorful Realm of Living Beings (J. Dōshoku sai-e; c. 1757–1766) is the premier example of the bird-and-flower tradition. Described as both dynamic and meditative, this 30-scroll set transcends the natural world to capture the essence of the Buddha nature itself.

Along with this masterpiece is Jakuchū’s triptych of the Buddha Śākyamuni from the Zen monastery Shōkokuji in Kyoto. The triptych was displayed them in a large temple room during Buddhist rituals.

Colorful Realm: Japanese Bird-and-Flower Paintings by Itō Jakuchū (1716–1800)
National Gallery of Art, West Wing
March 30–April 29, 2012
Information: (202) 737-4215 or

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