The Zentner Collection - For the Finest in Asian Antiques

Antique Japanese Print of Kukai and Dainichi Nyorai


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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Japanese: Woodblock Prints: Pre 1700: Item # 1253381
The Zentner Collection
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5757 Horton Street
Emeryville, CA 94608
510.653.5181

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Antique Japanese print depicting the founder of the Shingon or "True Word" school of Buddhism, Kūkai (774-835). He was a famous calligrapher and engineer who invented the kana, syllabic Japanese scripts used in the Japanese writing system. In his hands he holds a vajra, a ritualistic weapon representing firmness of spirit and spiritual power, and prayer beads. Above him is Dainichi Nyorai, the central deity of the Shingon religion, surrounded by Bonji (single letter words derived from sanskrit), which usually represent other deities, Buddhas, and Bodhisattvas. The bottom right reads "Kukai", with a signature by the artist. Edo period, dated 1650 Size: 27.75" height, 11.25" width