Six framed pictures (once pages from an album with pictures of all 36 poets); ink and light colors on paper decorated with yaki-e (burned designs). Each 8 1/2" x 6". The artist of these paintings trained in the style of the Tosa school, an esteemed artistic lineage founded in the early Muromachi era (1392-1568) that painted both secular and religious-themed pictures for the emperor and other aristocratic families. These paintings though, were painted by an emulator of that lineage for affluent, well-educated merchant patrons who had, from the 18th century, had begun to appreciate Japan's ancient courtly artistic and literary heritage. Romantic and nostalgic poetry in Japanese was highly admired among ancient Japanese aristocrats. They particularly favored handwritten anthologies of poetry by thirty-six celebrated poets, who since the 11h century, had been designated as the â€œImmortal Poets,â€ and a special compilation of these poetsâ€™ works was produced. Compilations of their work came to include one poem by each Immortal Poet, a short biography, and, as in these pictures, an imaginary portrait.