Calligraphy by Shinzan Roshi – Yume



Japanese: Yume
English translation: Dream
Box: Wooden with card sleeve
Scroll dimensions: 183x32cm
Comments: Watch a talk about this calligraphy by Daizan Roshi here

The character “yume” (dream) was a favourite among many Zen masters to write, and probably reflects the illusory nature of life that Zen seeks to understand. This idea is closely related to and in fact, may be borrowed from the Taoist tale in which Chuang-tzu dreams peacefully that he is a butterfly flying happily around. When he awakens, Chuang-tzu is not sure if he dreamt he was a butterfly or if the butterfly dreamt it was Chuang-tzu. Thus, the idea of distinctions is raised.

Shinzan Roshi has written the character 夢 “dream” in a number of separate scrolls and, while initially the works all seem quite similar, in fact there are slight variations in the structure of his brushwork. In one work, the upper portions of the character, in particular the rectangular box with the two vertical lines going through it, are much more distinct, giving the character more structure and a sense of architectural stability. In another work, the upper portion of the character is deconstructed, the shapes simplified into a more fluid sweep of the brush.

These are the types of variations within calligraphy that make the art so captivating. Even within the work of one person, the possibilities for transforming characters are endless.

If you’re interested in buying this beautiful calligraphy, please contact us.

Alternative versions available

150301-248 yume 4 150301-53 yume 3 150301-42 yume 2

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