Kaiho Yusho (1533-1615) lived a dramatic life. His early years were filled with grief over loss of almost his entire family from the siege of Azai Nagamasa by Nobunaga.Kaiho's family were part of the advisors for the Azai family and had perished from the battle. Yusho was still a baby and managed to survive along with his brother.
Yusho, in hopes of reviving his family name, became an artist to support himself while thinking of ways to return to the position in society his family had. However, through the twist of events in Japanese history, Yusho in a way could not fulfill his personal wishes, but became a noted artist during the Momoyama era. Yusho was patronized by many important figures during the Momoyama~ early Edo period. Names include, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Empero Goyozei, Hachijo no Miya Toshihito Shino-o, etc.
Kaiho Yusho was strongly influenced by Liang Kai and the Song Dynasty painters, especially the monochrome masterpieces that survive in Japan. Yusho never used color in his works and only used black sumi ink to paint landscapes, animals, and human subjects. Yusho's works are now housed in Cleveland Museum of Art, Boston Museum of Fine Art, The Walters Art Museum in Maryland.
The scroll is in need of restoration since the mounting comes from the 18th century and could have been the last time when it was remounted (unless prior to the mounting, it was originally on an album or a section of a smaller sliding panel). Even so, the scroll is kept in good condition for the time it has passed. But once the scroll is remounted, then it will continue to "live" for the next century or so.
Dimensions to come.