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Distant Road II

Araki Minol, Japanese (born China), 1928–2010
Shōwa period, 1926–1989
Ink on four paper panels
Made in
Japan, Asia
Current Location
On View, Gallery 225
overall (all four panels together): 36 3/16 in. × 16 ft. 9 1/2 in. (91.9 × 511.8 cm)
far right panel: 36 3/16 in. × 50 in. (91.9 × 127 cm)
middle right panel: 36 3/16 × 50 1/2 in. (91.9 × 128.3 cm)
middle left panel: 36 3/16 × 50 1/2 in. (91.9 × 128.3 cm)
far left panel: 36 3/16 × 50 1/2 in. (91.9 × 128.3 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of the artist
© Minol Araki, licensed by David Frank and Kazukuni Sugiyama
Object Number
This painting depicts an expansive landscape splashed in ink across four paper panels. Land, water, and natural features are represented from a high perspective. Reading from right to left, the first panel depicts an open expanse of water; the second panel, an extended isthmus or peninsula. The third features dense hills and mountains ranging beyond the tops and branches of evergreens; the fourth panel shows an opening expanse of water. The so-called “ink-splash” painting tradition of China and Japan is the most demanding style. It requires faultless technique, crystal-clear conception, and single-minded concentration. These same elements are valued traits of the Zen Buddhist practitioner. Thus, the most accomplished and powerful of the “ink-splashed” paintings are likened to the moment of enlightenment: brilliant, highly personal, and irrefutable. Araki Minol was an independent artist in the literati tradition of East Asia. He was born in Dairen (Dalian, now part of Lüda, China), a port city in Japanese-occupied Manchuria. Having grown up amidst Japanese, Chinese, and Russian influences, Araki subsequently developed an even more cross-cultural mindset by living in Tokyo, Taipei, and New York.
1979 - 2003
Collection of the artist, Araki Minol (Araki Minoru, 1926–1989), Tokyo, Japan [1]

2003 -
Saint Louis Art Museum, given by the artist [2]

[1] Deed of Gift dated August 19, 2003 [SLAM document files].

[2] Minutes of the Collections Committee of the Board of Trustees, Saint Louis Art Museum, September 23, 2003.
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