Takeuchi Keishu: Totenko- A Cock Crows - Japanese Art Open Database

Artist: Takeuchi Keishu

Title: Totenko- A Cock Crows

Date: 1909

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Source: Japanese Art Open Database
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Description: Sunday, 6 February 2005 Artist: Takeuchi, Keishu Date: 1909 Description: Kuchi-e, A Cock Crows Image Size: approx. 8" x 11.5" UK#: K107 "A Cock Crows by Takeuchi Keishu was for 1909, the year of the cock. The Japanese title, Totenko, was the equivalent of 'cock-a-doodle-do.' The three kanji used to write this title, however, give it special meaning. They are to, meaning east, ten, meaning sky, and ko, meaning red. Thus, the sound of the title in Japanese also means 'red at dawn in the eastern sky.' This phrase, like the flag, was a symbol of Japan and contributed to nationalist sentiment. In the print a young woman is kneeling with a partially furled Japanese flag in hand. She gazes intently at a cock that returns her gaze. The juxtaposition of the flag and cock brings to mind the special shrine to Amaterasu, the sun goddess, where a national flag flies proudly near the entrance, and cocks, harbingers of the rising sun, roam freely." - Woodblock Kuchi-e Prints by Helen Merritt

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