Statues of the Jizō Bosatsu [Skt. Ksitigarbha] Family Enshrined at Fumonji Temple in Rikuzentakata / The Father Jizō Belonging to Zenkōji Temple in Nagano Prefecture
The town of Rikuzentakata was devastated during the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011. Large numbers of people, as well as the ‘Takata Pine Grove’ were swept out to sea by the tsunami and all that remained was a single tree. The members of the Conservation Course’s Sculpture Laboratory felt that as artists, they wanted to contribute something to the town’s recovery, so using timber from trees that had been swept away, they produced four statues of Jizō Bosatstu [Skt. Ksitigarbha]. Regarding the site where these should be enshrined, we received a lot of support from various sources and as a result, a special shrine was erected for them in the grounds of Rikuzentakata’s Fumonji Temple. One year after the earthquake, a consecration ceremony was held for the statues at Zenkōji Temple in Nagano Prefecture and the four standing statues of Jizō Bosatsu were named the ‘Jizō Family’. The ‘child Jizōs’ and ‘mother Jizō’ are enshrined at Fumonji Temple in Rikuzentakata while the ‘father Jizō’ is enshrined at Zenkōji, but once a year, ‘father Jizō’ makes the trip to Rikuzentakata to allow the family to enjoy a reunion.