Sunday, September 19, 2010

4 x 6 inches
woodblock print

This charming papier mache dog (inu hariko) is a wish for good luck and good health.
In Japan it is given to pregnant women in hopes of an easy childbirth,
and also to new babies, to be hung over the crib to guard the baby from harm and illness.
Different shrines have different styles of inu hariko. Some have toy drums on their backs.
This one has a basket and an umbrella on his head!
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Saturday, September 18, 2010

4 x 6 inches
woodblock print

In the olden days, Japanese kitchens had an image of a round-cheeked smiling woman, named Otafuku,
who carried a rice scoop in one hand. She brought good luck to the hearth.
Throughout Asia, the Bodhisattva of Mercy (Kannon in Japan, Kuan Yin in China)
is often depicted with a long-necked bottle containing healing balm,
or the elixer of immortality. I combined them in one image, as a blessing
for physical and spiritual health.
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