|Shimizu Kôshô (1911-1999) |
Seals: Kôshô & 207th gen. Ka .. matsu .. (illegable)
Technique: colours on paper 135,5 x 34
Mounting: green silk
ceramic rollers, 201 x 37,8
Condition: a crease from mounting, otherwise fine
He became the 208th generation abbot, dai bettô, in 1978)
Shimizu Kôshô was born in Himeji. In 1927 he entered the Todai-ji in Nara. Upon graduating in Buddhist studies from Ryokoku University in 1933 he took up residence at the Tenryu-ji for four years to study and practice Zen under the guidance of the Abbot Seki Seisetsu (1877-1945). In 1947 he became director of Todai-ji High School. In 1959 he was appointed director of the Monks' Academy (Kangakuin) at Todai-ji, and in 1963 became director of Todai-ji Girls' School and Todai-ji Kindergarten. 1969 marked a turning point in Kôshô's career, when he was appointed Head of Religious Affairs of the Kegon Tradition. When in 1975 the abbot Kamitsukasa Kaiun (1907-1975) died Kôshô was chosen to be his successor, and he became the 208th abbot of Todai-ji. However, he already resigned in 1981.
For the remaining 18 years of his life, Shimizu Kôshô was dedicated to art. He became a prolific "eccentric" painter, calligrapher and figurative potter. In 1994, when the Shosha Art and Craft Museum (in Himeji, Hyogo Prefecture), was founded, Kôshô was made its honorary director.