Beyond Failure or Success

Kodojin - the Old Taoist - was both a poet and a painter. And he is remembered as being one of the last in a long line of literati artists in Japan. He led a rather quiet and reflective life of study, but his poetry and paintings are dramatic and unconventional.

His landscapes are always unusual, mostly eccentric, and sometimes psychedelic. Nevertheless, he originally was «noted more for his poetry than his painting, Kodojin set the tone for his landscapes through his inscriptions. Self-taught in painting, the eccentric poet-painter created landscapes in a variety of unusual styles.» (Paul Berry, Literati Modern, p. 152).


The poem wich sets the tone for this landscape was first published in 1912 as one of a set of four poems in Kodojin’s verse collection, Seisho's Mountain Studio Collection:


Only white clouds moving,

My spirit returns to a point of ease.

Transcendent - beyond failure or success,

Sitting alone viewing the empty mountains.


Fukuda Kodojin (1865-1944)

Ink on paper

129.2 x 31.4 cm (50 3/4 x 12 1/4 in.)

Mounting 197 x 44 cm (77 1/2 x 17 1/4 in.)

Original box (tomobako)

Inv.no. 1854

$6,860.00 (free international shipping)



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