Kan Tenju (1727-1795) was a calligrapher and painter of the mid-Edo period. His real family name was Aoki, and his first name, Tenju, was Dainen in Chinese characters, commonly known as Choshiro, and his stage names were Drunken Jinzai and Sangak Dosha. He called himself “Han” because of the legend that the ancestor of the Aoki family was King Yozhang of Baekje.
At the age of 15, he met Taiga Ike and Fuyo Gao in Kyoto. Around this time, he was adopted by the Nakagawa family, which operated a money exchange business in Matsusaka, and moved to Matsusaka, where he succeeded Seizaburo Nakagawa as the fifth generation Nakagawa at the age of 33. He first studied calligraphy under Matsushita Ouseki in Edo, then under the guidance of Sawada Togo, and immersed himself in the study of the calligraphy of Wang Xizhi and Wang Xianzhi. He collected ink rubbings imported from China and worked on their reproduction, publishing what is known as the Okadera version of the ink rubbings and developing a new technique for publishing ink rubbings. He also excelled in nanga (Chinese painting) and seal engraving, and was widely versed in the ways of elegance.