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Thu, Dec 15, 2022

TSUMUGU to help repair seated Yakushi Nyorai of Shinyakushi-ji in fiscal 2023

Wooden seated statue of Yakushi Nyorai
Shinyakushi-ji temple, Nara city

The Tsumugu Project — operated by Japan’s Cultural Affairs Agency, Imperial Household Agency and national daily newspaper The Yomiuri Shimbun — will provide financial support to help restore seven cultural assets, including the wooden seated statue of Yakushi Nyorai, a designated national treasure housed at the Shinyakushi-ji temple in Nara city, in fiscal 2023.

Shinyakushi-ji’s seated Yakushi Nyorai, known for its distinctive, wide-open eyes, was carved from a single block of Japanese nutmeg wood using the ichiboku-zukuri technique in the late Nara-early Heian period. Conservators will spend two years to fix the cracks from insect damage found on the base of the statue and to deal with other issues.

Another designated national treasure to be repaired under the project starting next year is a set of documents and texts concerning Heian-period monk Enchin (founder of the Jimon school of the esoteric Tendai Buddhism, otherwise known as Chisho Daishi) housed at the Mi-i-dera temple (also known as Onjo-ji temple) in Shiga Prefecture.

The five other assets are all designated important cultural properties:

  • Seated Yakushi Nyorai of Rokudochinno-ji temple (Kyoto city)
  • Partition paintings of Sodo-ji temple (Wakayama Prefecture) by Edo-period painters Maruyama Okyo and Nagasawa Rosetsu
  • Standing statue of the Eleven-headed Kannon of Hoshaku-ji temple (Kyoto Prefecture) by Inpa-school sculptors Inpan and In-un
  • Nirvana painting of Henmyo-in temple (Okayama Prefecture)
  • Historical materials concerning Yase Doji (literally, “children of Yase,” a group of people of the Yase district of Kyoto, who worked for the Enryaku-ji temple and later became palanquin bearers for the emperor) kept by the Association of the Yase Doji (Kyoto city)

(From The Yomiuri Shimbun and other sources)



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