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Goto Crab and Lotus kozuka

A pair of crabs wandering around in the riverbed below blooming lotus and leaves. The whole work is done in shakudo with one crab and the lotus flowers gilded, while the riverflow is displayed in silver streamlines. The nanako is fine and shows signs of gentle use which gives the piece a pronounced dignity and charm.

Flowering lotus is a very spiritual motif in buddhism, symbolizing enlightment itself and thorough purity. Crabs are frequently occuring in japanese mythology and symbolism, one of the most famous tales being the 'Heikegani' crabs (平家蟹). Playing at the end of the 12th century, warriors of the Heike clan that fell in the battle of  Dan-no-nura (壇ノ浦の戦い) and reincarnated as crabs living in the sea below. This is why the Heikegani crabs can be found with angry samurai faces on their shells [1].

Are these crabs and former warriors relentlessly seeking enlightment? Have they found enlightment in their fightful ending? Or is this just an arrangement of very tasty Sawagani crabs which are often served with Lotus roots all over japan? I leave that up to your interpretation. 

Goto Crab and Lotus Kozuka
Goto Crab and Lotus Kozuka
Goto Crab and Lotus Kozuka
Goto Crab and Lotus Kozuka
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