Skip to Main Content

Japanese Studies: Art

Scroll Paintings



A scene (AZUMA YA: East Wing) of Illustrated scroll of Tale of Genji (written by MURASAKI SHIKIBU (11th cent.). 

Nihon Emaki Taisei

In 2014 The Furman Libraries received a 55 volume anthology of Japanese Picture Scrolls, Nihon emaki taisei (日本絵卷大成 ), Zoku Nihon emaki taisei (続日本絵卷大成 ), and Zokuzoku Nihon emaki taisei (続々日本絵卷大成. 伝記緣起編 ) through a grant from the North American Coordinating Council on Japanese Library Resources (NCC). These scrolls date from the 12th Century and comprise literary illustrations of the world's oldest vernacular tale, The Tale of Genji (源氏物語).

In addition to their great beauty, the scrolls are a primary source for  information about Japanese literature, as well as cultural and art history.  In the documentary “Genji Scrolls Reborn”, which can be viewed from Films on Demand, the origin and techniques of the scroll paintings are examined.