Editing the report on the investigation of Hikone Byobu, a National Treasure

 Fuzokuzu, better known as Hikone Byobu since it was transmitted in the Ii family of Hikone, is rich with its composition that provides a narrative sense and the minute descriptions found in the figures and furnitures depicted. However, not much is known about the artist or the background for its creation. In addition, several interpretations have been made as to the fact that, the six pieces that constitute the folding screen have been passed down separately even though it is called a byobu (folding screen). As this screen will be restored over a period of 2 years from fiscal year 2006 as a project subsidized by the Agency for Cultural Affairs and Shiga prefecture, an investigation of the screen was conducted by the Hikone Castle Museum and the Institute. High-resolution digital images, infrared and photo-luminescence images were taken, and X-ray fluorescence analysis was made. Presently, we are editing the report on the results of our investigation that is scheduled to be published on the occasion of the opening of the exhibition “The National Treasure The Hikone Screen and the Refined Beauty of Koto Ware,” which will be held at the Hikone Castle Museum from September 28 to October 26. High-resolution images will be exhibited and a symposium will be held during this exhibition. In addition, the processes of restoration and points that have been elucidated through our investigation will be made public along with the restored screen.

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