"Sen-ja Mode"

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A Kozuka of great elegance depicting a journey.

9.6cm x 1.4cm x 0.40cm thickness

N.B.T.H.K. Hozon attribution dated Heisei 17, 2005. Hakogaki by Kubaro Yojoro dated February 2nd, 1944.



The Otsuki (大月) school begins with Otsuki Korin (Mitsushige) who is a craftsman of Owari province in the early 1700s. He traced his lineage back 18 generations to Ichikawa Hirosuke who is (in legend at least) the founder of all kinko artists. Korin worked in Kyoto maintaining a shop called Senya and did metalwork of all types, including sword fittings, and followed the Goto style. Following him are Mitsutsune and Mitsuyoshi, but the 4th generation Mitsuoki would be one of the all time greats of kinko artists. In practice he is considered the founder of the school. Mitsuoki moved to Kyoto at 20, then to Edo at 30 where he studied under a painter, Ganku, at the imperial court, and the influence is seen in the production of his work of birds, reeds and his human figures which are said to be represented with power and grace. He further studied under Nagazawa Rosetsu, and by the age of 50 returned to Kyoto.
Among the students inheriting from Mitsuoki is Shinoyama Atsuoki, who is also held as one of the very topmost kinko artists. He went on to provide custom work for the Shogun and the Emperor, and illustrates well the level at which the Otsuki school was achieving. Other great students in this school were Tokuoki, Hideoki, Minayama Oki, Tenkodo Hidekuni, Matsuo Gassan, and his son Mitsuhiro. One of them was Ikeda Takatoshi who would go on to teach the great master Kano Natsuo.
To visit ("Mode") one thousand shrines and temples ("Sen-ja"). It was a kind of pilgrimage started in the Muromachi period and it became popular among people in general in the Edo period. The pilgrims posted stickers on the gates of shrines and temples, which had their name painted, and it was the record for them to prove their visits.

How to Purchase this Kozuka

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A Collaboration of Robert E. Haynes and Elliott D. Long

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