The Department of Research Programming of the National Research Institute for Cultural Properties, Tokyo is conducting joint research with the Nara National Museum as part of the research project Survey Research on Applications of High-definition Digital Images. In March 2010, a report on a pedestal for reading Kasuga Gongen Genki-e (owned by Kasuga Taisha Shrine in Nara) was published. With the Kasuga Gongen Genki-e, the scene of the grounds of Kasuga Taisha Shrine is drawn on a folding screen with six panels that are approximately 42 cm in length, using gold and silver paints and gold and silver cut foils. This work has attracted attention because it is regarded as an old example of a paper folding screen and also as a precise example of a picture with gold and silver paints created in the fourteenth century. On the fluorescent image photographed this time in the joint research survey, patterns and detailed expressions that are not apparent to the naked eyes were confirmed. We hope that the fluorescent image will be an important research material in future studies on scenery images and pictures with gold and silver paints. When the Kasuga Gongen Genki-e was displayed in the Special Exhibition “On-Matsuri and the Sacred Art of Kasuga” from December 8, 2009 to January 17, 2010 before issuing the report, we exhibited the color image and fluorescent image photographed in this survey on panels to announce some of the results.
Cover of “investigation report of joint research on pedestal for reading Kasuga Gongen Genki-e”
Mr. Shimizu Ken, a researcher at the Nara National Museum, is giving an explanation in front of the pedestal for reading Kasuga Gongen Genki-e in the Special Exhibition “On-Matsuri and the Sacred Art of Kasuga.”