Thursday, March 14, 1991

The Tale of Genji

48" x 35"

Through the centuries, white has been the most revered color in Japan. But, the color equally respected and popular at the Imperial Court of Heian (794-1192) was the color ‘almost-black’.

Deeper colors expressed a higher rank within the same grade. Everyone wanted to have garments dyed in deeper color, so much so that scarlet looked like almost purple, and purple became so deep that the imperial assembly would look almost black.

In “The Tale of Genji,” I tried to express the sense of colors of the Heian court while evoking the stories of the graceful and romantic court life.

Courtesy of Mr. and Mrs. William Yee.

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