The novel by Murakami is the Death of the Comendador. The painting that appears in the novel is a scene, painted in a Japanese style, of a scene from Mozart's opera Don Giovanni. This opera is adapted from the Spanish of Tirso de Molina (El burlador de Sevilla) and features the Don Juan archetype. The narrator of the novel is a painter, who finds this painting and begins to study; he starts copying it in pencil sketches. Unlike the Japanese painter he is imitating, the narrator is a Western style painter, so this is a work of adaptation or translation:
No es pot dir que fos una feina d’«adaptació», però sí que havia d’interpretar el quadre i «traduir-lo» a la meva manera, i per fer-ho primer havia de copsar la intenció que hi havia en el quadre original. Dit d’una altra manera, jo poc o molt—havia d’entendre el punt de vista d’en Tomohiko Amada com a pintor o la seva manera de ser com a persona. Fent servir una metàfora, havia de ficar els peus a les seves sabates.
Murakami, Haruki. La mort del comanador 1 (Catalan Edition) (p. 99). Grup 62. Kindle Edition.
You can't say it was a work of adaptation, but that I had to interpret the painting, translate in my own way, and to do it first I had to capture the intention that was in the original painting. Put another way, I a little bit or a lot, had to understand the point of view of Tomoiko Amada as a painter or his way of being as a person. To use a metaphor, I had to put my feet in his shoes.