Japan Art and Tanaka Kyokichi (1892-1915): The Door of Death (Buddhism)

Japan Art and Tanaka Kyokichi (1892-1915)The Door of Death (Buddhism)

Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Tanaka Kyokichi (1892-1915) was born in the cultural prefecture of Wakayama. This part of Japan is especially famous for Shingon Buddhism (Holy Buddhist Monk Kūkai). Therefore, Buddhist pilgrims visit places including Koyasan and Negoro-Ji in Wakayama.

In 1913, Tanaka Kyokichi was diagnosed with tuberculosis. Astonishingly, in the same year, it is believed that he first took up the challenge of woodblock printing. Hence, despite the shadow of death, Tanaka Kyokichi was determined to express himself.

Kukai said, “Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought.” 

Tanaka Kyokichi – while learning art and poetry from the past – also sought a meaning to his life while the door of death was closing in. Indeed, all three art pieces in this article were completed while his life was ebbing away.

Matsuo Bashō (1644-1694) wrote:

Falling ill on a journey
my dreams go wandering
over withered fields

Modern Tokyo News is part of the Modern Tokyo Times group

http://moderntokyotimes.com Modern Tokyo Times – International News and Japan News

http://sawakoart.com – Sawako Utsumi and Modern Tokyo Times artist

https://moderntokyonews.com Modern Tokyo News – Tokyo News and International News


https://twitter.com/MTT_News Modern Tokyo Times