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Death of a Gashadokuro

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A study on both Japanese mythology and traditional Asian ink painting techniques.

The Gashadokuro is a mythological Japanese creature that is the result of fallen soldiers whose bodies have rotted in the fields, and victims of famine who die unknown in the wilderness. Unable to pass on, their souls are reborn as hungry ghosts, and as their bodies decay, their anger ferments into a powerful force – a grudge against the living – and this grudge twists itself into a physical, supernatural force. When the bones of hundreds of victims gather together into one mass, they form the Gashadokuro. Too large and powerful to be killed, Gashadokuro maintain their existence until the energy and malice stored up in their bodies has dissipated. This piece depicts the death of this creature, and the souls of the dead being freed from its angry wrath.

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