Shinshu MANABU
信州まなぶ “鯉の滝登り”


激しい水の流れに鯉が躍動する、70 LIGHT FACT信州まなぶ氏による直近の甲羅彫り。これまで身体いっぱいを使って主題を表現してきた氏が、ほぼ初めて本格的に額を取り入れた作品となる。にも関わらず、見事な描きぶりである。


The recent work of kora bori –carapace style– by Shinshu Manabu, in which a carp lively moves in the violent flow of water. This is almost the first time for him to use gaku in his work in earnest, as he has been using client’s entire back to express the main subject. In spite of that, this is a wonderful work.

The undulating shape of water gives a sense of mass, and the carp that twists and swims with no regard for its resistance is given a vitality that cannot be expressed by nuki bori –subject only style–. Here, you can clearly see the success of his freehand work, which he insists on.


In Chinese legend, a carp is said to be a dragon if it can climb the waterfall in the rapids of the Yellow River. For this reason, it is a very popular irezumi design as a symbol of success in life. Based on this tradition, the front panel will depict the transformation of a monster carp into a dragon, and this work will eventually be completed as donburi –full body style–.


In addition, the Chinese pronunciation of the word “goldfish” is close to that of “wealth”, so it has been used as a lucky charm associated with money luck since ancient times. Also it is said to represent the strong will of “not being able to do what others want” in irezumi, because it is inedible, cannot be eaten by any ways of cooking.
※See Shinshu Manabu’s interview here

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