Artist: Kubo Takuji 久保卓治 (Japan, born 1948)
Historical period(s)
Showa era, 1986
Engraving; ink on paper
H x W: 26.6 x 35.4 cm (10 1/2 x 13 15/16 in)
Credit Line
Gift of the artist
Arthur M. Sackler Gallery
Accession Number
On View Location
Currently not on view


Japan, scorpion, Showa era (1926 - 1989)
Provenance research underway.

The works of Takuji Kubo (born 1948) reflect a strain in Japanese graphic art influenced by a long-standing Japanese interest in natural history illustration, the European traditions of copperplate etching and, in particular, Northern Renaissance manifestations of engraving techniques and themes.

Scorpion is a finely detailed etching showing a scorpion oriented to the upper right of the picture plane and a fragmented rodent's skull at the lower left of the plane. This technically exquisite impression seems dramatically composed to suggest the death left in the wake of the venomous arachnid. Many other of Kubo's nature studies show dead speicmens. All seem to refer to the brute, silent, and egalitarian qualities of death. This method of treatment recalls Durer's blending of religious memento mori themes with observations of natural cycles.

Collection Area(s)
Contemporary Art, Japanese Art
Web Resources
Google Cultural Institute
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