The Kose school (巨勢派)

The Kose school was a family of painters which existed from the early Heian period, through the Muromachi, to the Meiji period.

This school does not represent a single style of painting like other schools, but the various painting styles created by KOSE no Kanaoka and his descendants and pupils.

The family started out as court painters, but the 12th head, Nagamochi, became a priest painter of Buddhist images in Kofuku-ji Temple, and his descendants continued in the same profession. The history of the Kose family as priest painters of Buddhist images of Daijo-in Temple can be traced up to the end of the Muromachi period, but the family probably continued in the same work into the Edo period.

KASUGA no Motomitsu, KOSE no Kinmochi's pupil, founded the Tosa school.

List of heads of the Kose school in chronological order
The first head of the family (school): KOSE no Kanaoka
KOSE no Kanaoka created Yamato-e (a traditional painting style of the late Heian and Kamakura periods dealing with Japanese themes), and could trace his lineage back to a distinguished family of the Kose clan in ancient times. He was active during the Jogan and the Engi eras (859-922).

The second head of the family (school): KOSE no Omi
The first son of Kanaoka
"The Tale of Genji" describes that the illustrations for "the Tale of the Bamboo Cutter" were made by KOSE no Omi, and that the manuscript was written by KI no Tsurayuki.

The third head of the family (school): KOSE no Kintada
The second son of Kanaoka
According to "Nihon Kiryaku" (a chronological summary of Japanese history), he did a painting on eight folding screens by order of the Emperor in 949.

The fourth head of the family (school): KOSE no Kinmochi
The third son of Kanaoka
"The Tale of Genji" records that Kinmochi painted a picture of a ceremony for his lord.

The fifth head of the family (school): KOSE no Hirotaka (広貴) (Note that Hirotaka may also be written in different kanji as 弘高 or 広高).

The son of Fukae (Kinmochi's son)
According to "Konki" (the diary written by FUJIWARA no Yukinari), the son of Fukae painted a portrait of Priest Shoku Shonin of Mt. Shosha by order of the retired Emperor Kazan in 1002.

The sixth head of the family (school): KOSE no Koreshige, Hirotaka's son

The seventh head of the family (school): KOSE no Nobumochi, Koreshige's son

The eighth head of the family (school): KOSE no Munemochi, Nobumochi's son

The ninth head of the family (school): KOSE no Masumune, Munemochi's son

The 10th head of the family (school): KOSE no Tomomune, Masumune's son

The 11th head of the family (school): KOSE no Munehisa, Tomomune's son

The 12th head of the family (school): KOSE no Nagamochi, Munehisa's son

The 13th head of the family (school): KOSE no Mitsuyasu, Nagamochi's son

He was active during the Shoo era (1288-1292).
His representative work was "Jizoson reigen emaki" (a horizontal picture scroll depicting miraculous Jizo, the Guardian Deity of Travelers and Children). (Kenko YOSHIDA offered a compliment on this picture scroll.)

The 14th head of the family (school): KOSE no Tomoie
Mitsuyasu's son
"Iwashimizu hachiman senza engi e" (a scroll picture showing the origin of the Iwashimizu hachiman-gu Shrine) is probably his work.

The 15th head of the family (school): KOSE no Tomoyasu
Mitsuyasu's second son
His representative work was "Shihon choshoku Koya Daishi gyojo zu" (the illustrated biography of Priest Koya Daishi)

The 16th head of the family (school): KOSE no Gyoson, the first son of Tomotaka (Nagamochi's second son)

The 17th head of the family (school): KOSE no Gyogon
Gyoson's son
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Ichijo-in Temple
His representative work, "Shinzo ita e" (a panel painting depicting an image of a god), is in the possession of Yakushi-ji Temple

The 18th head of the family (school): KOSE no Tomoyo
The first son of Yugen (a son of Gyoyu who was Tomotaka's second son)
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Daijo-in Temple
He probably held the rank of "Shikibu Hokyo" (priest), but there are no records of this.

The 19th head of the family (school): KOSE no Koyu
The second son of Yugen (a son of Gyoyu who was Tomotaka's second son)
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Daijo-in Temple
Shinano Hogen (rank of priest)

The 20th head of the family (school): KOSE no Senyu
Koyu's son
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Daijo-in Temple
Chikuzen Hokyo (rank of priest)

The 21st head of the family (school): KOSE no Genyu (源有)
Senyu's son
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Daijo-in Temple
Mikawa Hoshi (rank of priest)

The 22nd head of the family (school): KOSE no Shigetomo
Genyu's son,
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Daijo-in Temple
Chikuzen Hokyo (rank of priest)

The 23rd head of the family (school): KOSE no Nagatomo
Shigetomo's son
Priest painter of Buddhist images in Daijo-in Temple
Chikuzen Hokyo (rank of priest)

The 32nd head of the family (school): KOSE no Kanechika

The 33rd head of the family (school): KOSE no Shoseki, real name Kaneoki.
Kanechika's son,

Professor of Tokyo Bijutsu Gakko or Tokyo School of Arts (present-day Tokyo Geijutsu Daigaku or Tokyo National University of Fine Arts and Music)
Though his family's profession was a Buddhist painting, he learned the painting of the Tosa school.