538 Akaoka-cho, Konan-shi, Kochi Prefecture 781-5310
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About this sight

Who is Ekin?

The Ekingura museum contains artworks from the artist Ekin. Ekin is short for Eshi Kinzō, or Kinzō the Painter (1812-1876). Kinzō was originally a Kano school official painter of the Kirima clan, chief retainer of the Tosa Domain. His real name was Kinzō, but he called himself Hayashi Tōi. He later became a townsman painter under the name Hirose Tōi. After his success with shibai-e byōbu (paintings on folding screens depicting scenes from kabuki and jōruri), his popularity grew and he came to be known as Ekin.
A great deal of shibai-e byōbu were painted by Ekin’s disciples in various locations of the Tosa region. These painters were also called Ekin-san. Until recently, in the Tosa region, when a person saw a child painting, they would ask, “Are you going to be Ekin?” meaning, “Are you going to be a painter?” making Ekin’s name synonymous with painters.