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Hirohiko Araki Congratulates 900th Anniversary of Golden Hall at Chūson-ji Temple

Hirohiko Araki writes congratulatory message for 900th anniversary of the Golden Hall (Konjiki-dō)’s construction at Chūson-ji Temple.

On January 17, 2024, the official website for The Golden Hall of Chūson-ji Temple’s Special Exhibition posted a congratulatory message from JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure creator, Hirohiko Araki, for the 900th anniversary of the Golden Hall’s construction.

Chūson-ji is a Buddhist temple in Hiraizumi, Iwate Prefecture, Japan, which was founded in 1095. In June 2011, it was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Golden Hall, also known as Konjiki-dō, was built in 1124.

NHK is holding an exhibition from January 23, 2024 to April 14, 2024 at the Tokyo National Museum. The exhibition features the hall’s adornments and National Treasures, including the eleven Buddhist statues that are on its central altar. The gallery will also have a full-scale digital recreation of the Golden Hall in 8K resolution.

Hirohiko Araki’s Message

Congratulations on the 900th anniversary of the Chūson-ji Golden Hall’s construction!

About 10 years back, I created this piece as an illustrated image for the “Tōhoku Reconstruction Hiraizumi Declaration” after the Cultural Heritage of Hiraizumi in Iwate Prefecture was registered as a World Heritage site.

I was given the chance to draw the “Hiraizumi and the Four Generations of the Ōshū Fujiwara Clan,” but to be honest, I hardly ever drew people in traditional Japanese outfits before. And here I was, trying to capture the entire charm of the Ōshū Fujiwara Clan in just one image. I remember that theme being quite a difficult artistic challenge for me.

When I was a kid, I went to the Chūson-ji Golden Hall in Hiraizumi on school trips or family road trips. Remembering those stone steps I climbed back then, I tried placing the four generations of the Fujiwara clan on those steps in my drawing. Suddenly, everything clicked. I finished the art in one go and it turned out to be a lovely piece.

Hirohiko Araki, January 2024

Source: Exhibition Site

On November 25, 2021, Hirohiko Araki won the Iwate Hometown Special Manga Award for this artwork, which helped inform people of Hiraizumi’s international recognition and the local reconstruction efforts in the region.

About Hirohiko Araki

Hirohiko Araki is a manga artist from Sendai, the capital city of Miyagi Prefecture, Japan. JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure is his most successful series being in serialization for 37 years and highly regarded internationally. The ninth part of the series began in February 2023. The series currently has 968 chapters in total.

Araki switched magazines from Weekly Shonen Jump to Ultra Jump on March 19, 2005. At the time, the seventh part of the series, Steel Ball Run, was on its 24th chapter. Ultra Jump has published JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure monthly since then.

JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure has an anime adaptation that began in 2012 and completed up to the sixth part of the series in December 2022. The series also has an older OVA adaptation, several video games, and many light novel spin-offs.

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