Lotus Sutra of the Wonderful Law (Myōhō Renge-kyō)

Onkō Jiun, Japanese, 1718 - 1804

Made in Japan, Asia

Edo Period (1615-1868)

Late 18th century

Ink on paper; mounted as a hanging scroll

6 feet 9 inches × 26 1/2 inches (205.7 × 67.3 cm) Image: 48 7/16 × 22 5/8 inches (123 × 57.5 cm)

Curatorial Department:
East Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
Purchased with the Hollis Family Foundation Fund, 2002

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One the most talented and individualistic of Edo period calligraphers, Jiun was trained as a Buddhist monk and became renowned for his studies of the Sanskrit language. Jiun's calligraphy is most influenced by the brushwork of the Öbaku Zen monks, known as bokuseki (ink traces), although he seems consciously to ignore the rules of calligraphy in his free and idiosyncratic handling of ink and brush. The five-character inscription of this calligraphy reads myöhö renge-kyö, or Lotus Sutra of the Wonderful Law, referring to the canonical Buddhist text more popularly known simply as the Lotus Sutra.