〒４０９−２７２７ 山梨県南巨摩郡早川町薬袋２１３ 工房映水 宛
[Online Shabutsu Project]
Let me introduce my [Online Shabutsu Project].
I would be happy if you could read this when you have a moment.
Due to the Prime Minister’s emergency declaration today, the Japan Art Awards Exhibition, scheduled for April 20 2020, has been postponed. I spent more than a month on my new artwork for this exhibition, because my other work (which was supposed to be sent back from a solo exhibition abroad) cannot be returned to me by mail with the spread of COVID-19.
As the situation becomes increasingly dire, I have received many inquiries and concern about the exhibition. If this exhibition were mine, I would have been able to decide everything for myself and reply to all of them, which has been difficult and disheartening. Moreover, while I was painting, I feared that visitors and staff members could become infected if they attended the exhibition.
Meanwhile, I’ve seen many musicians around the world hold online live shows. I have been wondering if there is anything I can do like this as a painter, even though I know that paintings do not speak as loudly as music. Today, I am so glad to announce that the time has come, and that I am able to make my dream a reality.
[Online Shabutsu Project] is the event that anyone can participate in by downloading my drawing free of charge at my official website, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, which is available from today until April 26, 19:00.
Print the drawing and trace the outline with a calligraphy brush. If you do not have one at home, any pen is OK. Normally we put another piece of paper (“washi” or thin Japanese traditional paper) on the model to trace. However, you will not have special “washi”, you can trace it directly on the printed paper. You can also apply colors to your drawing if you want. The important part is to concentrate on tracing, which will sweep away your anxieties and fear.
My heart was calm while I was painting even though COVID-19 infections are spreading. I want to share a peaceful moment with you all, as we live a completely different life rhythm, filled with anxiety.
After you have finished drawing, write the date, your name and desire. Send your drawing by post before May 4 to my studio. The address is:
213 Minai, Hayakawa-cho, Minamikoma-gun, Yamanashi-ken
Postal Code: 409-2727
All of the drawings I receive will be brought to the Buddhist temple, Takeibo in Mt. Minobu, for the special prayer which will start at 2 PM on May 5 (JST). You can see it live on my Facebook page. The prayer will be continued every day until February 2021 and then all the drawings will be burnt in a ceremony in the temple, which means your drawing will become sacred with your sincere concentration.
I hope [Online Shabutsu Project] will bring many people around the world a relaxing moment while you stay home, regardless of nationality, age and religious belief.
I pray for the end of COVID-19 infections,
I pray for the health and safety of you, your family and friends,
I pray for the return of peaceful days when kids can go to school,
I pray for the world’s victory against the coronavirus.
※ For whom don’t know about “Shabutsu”
“Sha” means tracing, “butsu” means Buddha. Tracing the image of Buddha is said to be helpful for you to meditate and obtain enlightenment. Focusing on tracing in a quiet room clears your mind regardless of your religion. Normally, a “shabutsu” meeting is held in a room in a Buddhist temple guided by a priest or a monk.
※ About the model
The model I chose for this event is “Walk Alone Like a Rhinoceros Horn.” I drew this, inspired by the phrase in the Buddhist scripture Sutta Nipata. A rhino is Bodhisattva in the austere training. The original drawing was made recalling my long and hard time while I was fighting against illness. But it was burned in an accidental fire. I recreated this drawing wishing that it will help people who are struggling as I did.
A rhinoceros does not live in herds. It lives alone. Thus a horn of a rhino means solidarity. “Walk alone like a rhinoceros horn,” means “Take your own steps alone.” Being alone temporarily is necessary for your spiritual growth.
How to participate
1. Download a copy for the Buddha from the following address on your mobile or PC.
You can download until Aplil 26 17:00
2. Select A4 size and print.
3. Use the brush pen to trace the gray line.
4. Complete by writing your wish, date and name.
5. Mail to Koubou Eisui.
* Please pay the mailing cost.
213 Minai, Hayakawa-cho, Minamikoma-gun, Yamanashi Pref. Japan zip409-2727
6. Deadline must arrive on May 4 to pray.
7. Pray at Takeibo
* Held on May 5 at 14:00 at Takenobo
* Live on Eizui Facebook.
8. Your shabutsu will be chanted every morning, and will be fired at Takeibo Grand Festival in 2021.
Don’t worry! Having seen many people outside Japan are interested in my project, which made me feel so happy, I made the new outline.
The important things for me are;
-many people around the world will be able to have relaxing time without anxiety by concentrating on “shabutsu” drawing,
-many people around the world will be able to share the moment for unity by doing the same thing at the same time.
So, those of you who have difficulty to send your drawing by post can participate in this event by sending it via internet. After having completed the drawing, take a picture of it and post it on my Facebook page at:
I will print everything that I receive and bring them to the temple for the prayer.
I believe this new method will make it easier way for you to participate!