- 美術研究 = The bijutsu kenkiu : the journal of art studies
- no.396, pp.25-44, 2008-11-05
Jukô-in was built as the family temple in memory of Miyoshi Nagayoshi (1522-64, posthumous name Jukô-indono, or Lord of Jukô-in) and is one of the sub temples of Daitoku-ji in Kyoto. The main hall of Jukô-in, built in the typical architectural style of the late Muromachi period, is extant. The paintings on the walls of the hall are thought to be essentially contemporaneous with the building and they too remain in good condition. Indeed, these paintings are considered one of the benchmark works of Kano Eitoku (1543-90), a painter who defined his age. In the past there has been an ongoing debate amongst painting historians as to the date of the construction of the Jukô-in main hall, with one faction backing a date of 1566 and another 1583. However, the restoration report that set off this dating debate states that construction of the hall lasted from the end of the Eiroku period (1558-69) through the beginning of the Tenshô era (1573-1591), and thus does nothing more than indicate that the foundation date is not limited to 1566. Watanabe Yûji, the proposer of the 1583 theory, considers that there is still ample room for a reconsideration of the 1566 theory, and thus his argument is nothing more than a statement that in the extreme, 1583 could be possible. In spite of these arguments, the Jukô-in clearly existed within Daitoku-ji as an organization in 1572, as Ogawa Hiromitsu has indicated. Further, if the extant main hall dates to 1583, then it must be imagined that its state indicates that it was moved from another site or was rebuilt. However, at this point in time there has been no report of the existence of any proof or documentary support for such a state of affairs. Further, judging from the state of the inscription, 1583 might be the date in which the previous cypress-bark roof of the main hall was changed to a tile roof. Thus it is important to note that there is no evidence to confirm either hypothesis, and further, that in the Eiroku era there is no trace of the residence of either Shôrei Sôkin (1505-83), founding priest of Jukô-in, or his teacher Dairin Sôtô (1480-1568) at Jukô-in. It may be that 1566 marked the founding not of Jukôô-in, but rather that of its predecessor. Another possibility is that the founding of such a temple was conceived of in 1566 and later this date was taken as its honorary foundation date. Up until now there has been no definitive historical document directly linked to the creation of the Jukô-in main hall, and in the end, both the 1566 and the 1583 arguments remain without solid documentary evidence or circumstantial proof. At this stage, no matter what date is proposed as a production date for the Jukô-in wall panel paintings, given that there are no definitive dated inscriptions on the paintings itself, there is nothing that can extract us from a state of "nothing can be said." This author took a critical stance against the 1583 hypothesis in the exhibition review included below, and in this forum seeks a sense of direction in argument from the previously introduced information on the subject. The conclusion of this search finds that the date of 1571 can be proposed as the actual completion date of the Jukô-in main hall, based on the situation surrounding the commissioner of the Jukô-in, Miyoshi Yoshitsugu (1551-73), and the date of the portrait of Shorei Sôkin with self-colophon written in the Jukô-in main hall. It is similarly highly likely that the wall panel paintings can also be attributed to that year.