Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Japanese Short Form Poetry
Spring 2007, vol 5 no 1


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Fukuda Kodojin (1865-1944)
Japan, Meiji Period (1868 - 1912)
Ink on paper

Kodojin was born in the small town of Shingu in rural Wakayama Prefecture.
Although he became so skilled in Chinese poetry
that he published a collection of verse while in his twenties,
Kodojin switched to making modern-style haiku
after becoming a follower of Masaoka Shiki (1867-1902) in 1889.
Writing under his haijin name, Haritsu,
Kodojin frequently published haiku in poetry magazines
in the late Meiji period, and he became widely known
as Shiki's disciple. In the last thirty years of his life,
he again wrote Chinese verse and began to paint
distinctive literati landscapes signed with his painting name, Kodojin.
He also made simple paintings of plants and flowers
that emphasized his dramatic brushwork and inscriptions of Chinese poetry.
Kodojin was one of the earliest admirers of Tomita Keisen,
who possessed a similar taste of unusual compositions and unconventional brushwork.
Although the details of Kodojin's patronage remain unclear,
a great many of his paintings are exquisitely mounted,
suggesting that his works were acquired by wealthy collectors.

Reference: Stephen Addiss,
Old Taoist: the Life, Art and Poetry of Fukuda Kodojin (1865-1944),
Columbia University Press, 1999
Paul Berry, "Fukuda Kodojin (1865-1944)",
The Transformation of Japanese Painting Traditions
Nihonga from the Griffith and Patricia Way Collection
Modern Masters of Kyoto, Seattle Art Museum,
Seattle, 1999:216-17

Copyright 2007: Simply Haiku