SPECIAL ADVISORY: In accordance with Yale University’s revised COVID-19 protocols, the Yale University Art Gallery is closed to the public until further notice. Learn More

Loan Object
Artist: Yashima Gakutei, Japanese, ca. 1786–ca. 1855

Minamoto no Raikō (Yorimitsu), from the series Six Immortal Samurai Poets (Buke Rokkasen)

ca. 1827

Surimono, shikishi-ban; polychrome woodblock prints with gold and silver pigment and heavy gauffrage

sheet: 8 1/4 × 7 5/16 in. (21 × 18.5 cm)
Promised gift of Virginia Shawan Drosten and Patrick Kenadjian, B.A. 1970

八島岳亭 「武家六歌仙  源頼光」 江戸時代

These prints [ILE.2017.30.45–.50] are from a set of the Six Immortal Samurai Poets, or Buke Rokkasen, one of Yashima Gakutei’s masterpieces. The seated warriors—historical figures from the tenth to the early fifteenth centuries—dominate the compositions against thick gold pigment. The kyōka poets of the Edo period whose verses adorn the prints would have been fully aware of the lives and deeds of these samurai soldiers. Among the five, Minamoto no Sanetomo (1192–1219), identified as Kamakura Udaijin, or the Minister of the Right in Kamakura, was perhaps the best known as a poet. The kyōka, full of both nostalgia and satire, show the poets’ complex feelings about samurai. Yet, they were grateful for the peace and prosperity of the country, especially at the new year, when poets reflected on life and looked forward to the year ahead.

Edo period (1615–1868)
Works on Paper - Prints

Collection of Virginia Shawan Drosten and Patrick Kenadjian.


Sadako Ohki and Adam Haliburton, The Private World of Surimono: Japanese Prints from the Virginia Shawan Drosten and Patrick Kenadjian Collection (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2020), 61–69, no. 12, ill.

Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of such records is ongoing.