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Scholar Spotlight: Ogata Kōrin, Between Life and Art

  • Japan Information & Culture Center, Embassy of Japan 1150 18 Street Northwest Washington, DC, 20036 United States (map)

Scholar Spotlight: Ogata Kōrin, Between Life and Art

JICC Seasonal Art Lecture Series from Emerging Scholars

Presented by the Japan Information & Culture Center, Embassy of Japan

Image: Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.: Purchase - Charles Lang Freer Endowment, F1956.20

Ogata Kōrin (1658-1716) is one of Japan’s most cherished artists. Middle-school textbooks feature his works and contemporary artists and designers continue to draw from Kōrin’s idiosyncratic style. As was the case with many artists before and after him, history has made Kōrin a larger-than-life figure, a fact that has shrouded our understanding of the actual person behind his genius facade. Yet we are fortunate that Kōrin’s descendants preserved an unparalleled amount of documentation on Kōrin and his life. The wealth of letters and other records that survive allows us to discover a very private side of the artist, one that unveils how illicit love affairs and inconsiderate spending gave rise to one of Japan’s greatest artists.

About the Presenter

Frank Feltens received his PhD in Japanese art history from Columbia University in 2016. He is a specialist in Japanese painting with a particular focus on the late medieval and early modern periods, and is The Japan Foundation Assistant Curator of Japanese Art at the Freer|Sackler. Prior to coming to the Freer|Sackler, he worked at MoMA in New York, the National Museum of Asian Art in Berlin, and in Tokyo at the Nezu Museum and Sensoji Temple. He is also an instructor of the Japanese tea ceremony in the Urasenke tradition.


This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required for security purposes.

Program begins at 6:30 PM. Doors open 30 minutes prior.

No admission or re-entry will be permitted after 7:00 PM.

Registered guests will be seated on a first come, first served basis. Please arrive early as seating is limited and registration does not guarantee guests a seat.