The Kano School was the greatest and most successful of all the Japanese schools of painting. It was founded in the Muromachi period and representatives continued until the end of the Edo period and even beyond. Although its later generations fell into what is usually regarded as sterile copying (although sometimes very beautiful), the earlier generations were full of visual and creative power and energy.
It is two of these earlier artists, Kano Sanraku and his son-in-law and adopted son, Sansetsu, who are the subject of a lavish exhibition at the Kyoto National Museum. I had seen some of their paintings earlier, and without knowing much of their history, admired the elegance of Sanraku far more than the boisterous energy of his adoptive father, Eitoku, who did so much to promote his family and secure their position as the foremost artists of their day.