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The right hand screen represents summer with new bamboo shoots growing amongst the tall bamboo stalks, and the left hand screen with a dusting of snow on the leaves of the bamboo and on the ground portrays winter.

One of the few forms of Buddhist art unique to Japan, they can be found both at Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples and are presented as offerings to safeguard the compound and to ensure the prosperity of the Buddhist faith.

Rengetsu was in her lifetime a Buddhist nun, poet, calligrapher, potter and painter.

Shortly after her birth in Kyoto to a samurai family with the surname Todo, she was adopted by Otagaki Mitsuhisa who worked at Chion'in, an important Jōdo (Pure Land) sect temple in Kyoto, and was given the name Nobu.

The delicate hand-built tea utensils that Rengetsu inscribed with hauntingly beautiful poems are unique combinations of poetry, calligraphy and pottery; they were as highly prized in her own lifetime as they are now.