Kyoto Prefecture announces plan for establishment of facility for the Deaf

April 28, 2013

Kyoto Prefecture officials stated on April 28 about a plan to establish a facility for the Deaf community in Joyo-shi in the prefecture, which will be the first.

A information service center for the Deaf not only performs the training and dispatch of note-takers and sign language interpreters but also serves as an information dissemination base at the time of a disaster.

The government has promoted facility establishment in each prefecture and government ordinance city based on the disability master plan. According to the Kyoto prefecture officials, 37 facilities have been established in 36 out of 47 prefectures across the country as of October, 2012.

There is the center for the Deaf in Chukyo-ku, Kyoto-shi that is managed by Kyoto-shi, and there is no facility which the Prefecture administers. So the concerned organizations were demanding establishment of a prefecture facility for years.

It is due for examination of the facility development construction plan by summer, and for groundbreaking in 2014. It will be opened in the 2015 fiscal year.

Japanese source:

Specialists attend first study group meeting in Tottori Prefecture for "sign language language ordinance"

April 23, 2013

Tottori Prefecture held the first meeting of a study group of specialists in connection with the welfare and education of the Deaf on April 22 towards establishment of the first "sign language language ordinance" (tentative name) in the whole country.

Deaf persons also joined and exchanged opinions about the present condition and issues through the sign language interpreters.

The study group consists of about 20 persons representing the Deaf community, respectively: Japanese Federation of the Deaf (JFD) in Tokyo, the Prefecture League of Organizations of the Deaf (PLOD), and the Prefecture Council of Sign Language Circles.

There was explanation about the history that the Deaf were not allowed to use sign language at schools.

A JFD representative pointed out, "Since training for a sign language lecturer is not enough, it is an issue common to the whole country that neither those who study sign language, nor sign language interpreters increase in number."

The PLOD director said, "when Deaf persons are not able to convey what they think, they cannot make a living in society. If sign language were accepted as a language, there will be more understanding of the Deaf."

The prefecture officials, aiming at the establishment within the current fiscal year, will hold a next meeting in June and examine how to incorporate the result of the meetings into the draft ordinance.

Japanese source:

Takamatsu City shows the posture for fight against Deaf woman on sign language interpreter dispatch

 April 23, 2013

A Deaf office worker, Ikegawa Yoko, 41, sued the Takamatsu-shi authorities for turning down her suburban dispatch application of sign-language interpreting as unconstitutionality, and asked the city for disposal cancellation and compensation.

The first oral pleading of the lawsuit was held in the Takamatsu District Court in Takamatsu shi on April 22, and the city authorities showed the posture that they would fight.

Ikegawa applied the city for dispatch of sign-language interpreting in order that she might attend the briefing session of the vocational school in Tokyo which her daughter wanted to enter after graduation from high school in June, 2011, but her application was dismissed on the grounds that a dispatch place was the outskirts of a city, etc.

Furthermore, Ikegawa applied for sign language interpreting dispatch in order to attend her daughter's entrance ceremony at the vocational school in Tokyo in March, 2012, which was dismissed similarly.

She appealed and said, "Deaf persons use sign language, the only way for communication. I don't quite understand why the city simply rejected my applications for the sign language interpreting service".

In this trial, the sign language interpreter stood signing in the gallery. The screen of the summary note was projected on the wall with the projector there, too.

Japanese source:

Related link:

Court declines sign-language interpreting at public expenditure

Tsukuba University of Technology launches a project related to deaf studies

March 1, 2013

The National University Corporation Tsukuba University of Technology (NTUT) located  in Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki Prefecture, where Deaf/deaf students, and students with visual impairment study respectively, launched a website project on the instruction curriculum of "deaf studies."

"Deaf Studies" is an important course for Deaf/deaf students to empower themselves. However, currently it is difficult for general colleges/universities to establish deaf studies as a course because of lack of the know-how of instruction or an instructor.

With the teaching resource and instruction know-how that NTUT has accumulated, which the project team utilize, the instruction curriculum and contents (the website) of "Deaf Studies" are developed with the aim of offering the system which university staffs all over the country can utilize.

The "Deaf Studies" project has the following fields: "community", "history", "sport", "art", "technology", "sign language", and "education." A curriculum for each field is developed with an arranged resource to make the website.

Official website (Japanese):

National Athletic Meet organizing committee develops the sign language version of a theme song

The pamphlet introduces the motion of the sign language expressed consistent with the words of the National Athletic Meet theme song titled "For Tomorrow."

April 19, 2013

The 70th National Athletic Meet and the 15th National Sports Meet for Persons with Disabilities will be held respectively in Wakayama Prefecture in the autumn of 2015.

The organizing committee made the sign language version of the theme song "For Tomorrow" in order to deepen an understanding of a person with disability.

They introduced how to sign the theme song through YouTube and a pamphlet, etc. by cooperation of sign language circles.

The sign language circles within the prefecture are tackling practice of the signed song. They intend to introduce the signed song at the related sports events as well as distribute the pamphlet, etc.

Japanese source:

YouTube: "For Tomorrow" song signed

Tottori Prefecture and Nippon Foundation to establish a study group towards the sign language ordinance

April 18, 2013

In response to that Governor Hirai Shinji (平井伸治) has expressed the future establishment of "sign language ordinance" (tentative name), Nippon Foundation located in Minato-ku, Tokyo visited the prefectural government on April 16. They confirmed that they would jointly make a study group for the ordinance.

The group will study the cases, such as laws on sign language, sign language education, etc. in other countries, and get opinions into shape for the ordinance.

Study group members will be university teachers and officers of Deaf organizations, meanwhile Nippon Foundation will provide the cultivated know-how as well as fund the activities of the study group.

The first study group meeting will take place on April 22.

Japanese source:

Related link: 
Tottori Prefecture to establish "sign language ordinance"

Tottori Prefecture to establish "sign language ordinance"


Tottori Prefecture located in western Japan will launch the study group of the experts on April 22, who examine the contents of the ordinance towards establishment of "a sign language ordinance" (tentative name).

This ordinance regards sign language as a language indispensable for communication, aiming to improving the environment so that a Deaf person lives without any barriers.

The governor intends to propose to the prefecture assembly during the current fiscal year. If enacted, it will be the first time for a self-governing body all over the country.

In the report entitled "The Future Vision" that the prefecture has summarized in 2008, sign language is mentioned clearly that it forms "one culture as a language."

The Prefecture also has introduced a measure of relaying the plenary session of the prefecture assembly with sign-language interpreting.

Japanese source:

More college/university students with disabilities enrolled due to more support in the entrance examination or lectures


It turned out by investigation of Japan Student Services Organization that the students with disabilities enrolled in colleges/universities as of May, 2012 were 11,768, increased by 15% from the previous year.

Compared with the last investigation which started in 2005, it increases 2.2 times.

The person in charge of the organization is analyzing it as "the support in the entrance examination or lectures expanded, and also grasp of a student with disability by the college/universities progressed."

Investigation was conducted for a total of 1,197 colleges/universities, out of which 793 (66% ) colleges/universities enrolled the students with disabilities.

The number of students who are deaf/hard of hearing was 1,488.

The rate of 601 colleges/universities which support the students with disabilities in lectures is 50%, increased in number sharply from 206 (20%) in 2005.

The organization has started to build a network system for colleges/universities to share know-how regarding support for the students with disabilities.  

Japanese source:

Shizuoka Prefecture develops a hearing notebook to benefit Deaf/deaf children

April 17, 2013

In order to help the Deaf/deaf children, Shizuoka Prefecture has developed a "notebook on hearing" to make the lifestyle guidance and treatment available and to record the status of the hearing.

According to the Prefecture, the introduction of a similar notebook is nation's first. The Prefecture started distribution in four hospitals including the Prefecture General Hospital.

The notebook has, in addition to items that will be recorded with time about the fit condition of hearing aids and hearing test results, description of purchase subsidy program of hearing aids and hearing mechanisms.

About 2500 copies will be distributed free to children with hearing loss or possibility to hearing impairment under the age of 18. The Deaf/deaf children under the age of 18 are estimated to be about 880 in the prefecture.

Japanese source:

I wish sign language should be mentioned as one of the options in the hearing notebook, too.

Disaster information agreement on Deaf community exchanged for the first time in Mie Prefecture

April 13 2013

On April 12, the Ise-shi city office in Mie Prefecture signed an agreement with the Prefecture to provide the Prefecture Support Center for the Deaf with the information on the Deaf residents in the event of a disaster. This is a first of its kind in the nation.

In the event of a disaster, Ise-shi discloses to the Center, located in Tsu-shi, a copy of the registration list of those who require assistance which Ise-shi city office keeps.

Based on the information, the Center gives evacuation information, confirms the safety of the Deaf people, offers sign language interpreting services, etc.

Of the disability registration of Ise-shi, there is about 850 Deaf residents. On the other hand, the Center has only about 50 Deaf registrants in Tsu-shi.

This agreement will be possible to quickly support those who are not on the Center's registration list.

The center has just opened in Tsu-shi, Mie Prefecture on April 1, 2012.

Japanese source:

Deaf woman becomes principal of school for the Deaf in Tokyo

April 2013

According to the Meisei Gakuen School website in Japanese, Saito Michio (斉藤道雄), principal who is hearing and a journalist, was appointed to the chairperson of the board of trustees, starting this April.

Kaya Yoko (榧陽子), who is a Deaf female teacher and vice principal, was promoted to principal, too.

The Meisei Gakuen School, located in Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo, is well known for the only school for the Deaf in Japan that uses Japanese Sign Language as the first language of the Deaf children for instruction.

Fifty-eight students are enrolled currently: 15 preschoolers, and 43 graders from 1st through 9th.

Thirty one teachers (full and part timers) and staff in total work for the school.

Official site in English:

Japanese source:

Kaya may be the first Deaf female principal throughout the Japanese Deaf history, although there are Deaf males who were principal until the WWII area.

Project team formed in Osaka for more recognition of Deaflympics

April 13, 2013

The former athletes from Osaka and Tokyo launched a project team in order to advertise Deaflympics in the whole country.

They have made the rooter's song titled "Dream Stage", which is due to an announcement meeting in Osaka on April 14.

Japan has dispatched the national team to Deaflympics after the U.S. Summer Deaflympics in 1965.

In Taiwan Deaflympics in 2009 in which about 80 nations and the regions participated, Japan won 20 medals including five gold.

But, Deaflympics is little known at home. The investigation conducted by the government in the 2006 fiscal year showed that while the rate of people who answered that they knew the Paralympics was 94%, only about 3% about Deaflympics.

The project team was formed by an office worker Okamoto Kaori (岡本かおり), 37, of Osaka and others in February. She was chosen to the national team for the women's volleyball four times and won three medals at the past Deaflympics.

Eight members of the project team will organize the event which advertises Deaflympics all over the country from now on.

Japanese source:

Bar located in Kobe-shi welcomes Deaf customers in sign language

 April 11, 2013

The shot bar called "Jajan Jajan" where the customers, Deaf and hearing both, enjoy conversation in sign language with a glass in hand, is located in Nada-ku, Kobe-shi, Hyogo Prefecture.

On the weekend, the bar will be full of a large serving of going up. Except a laughing voice and the sound of clapping the hands, reggae music flows calmly.

Ono Takashi (大野高), a 37-year-old resident of Kobe-shi, opened the regular bar in December, 2005.

Five years ago he was unable to take communication with a Deaf woman who came to the shot bar. 

Ono made up his mind, eagerly going to a sign language class while working.

The Deaf visitors started to gather at Ono's store little by little. The hearing customer who happened to be present also learned sign language and fingerspelling and came to enjoy conversation with the Deaf visitors.

As "the place where everyone can enjoy communication in sign language", as he says, Ono has opened the "Sign Language Bar" program in the bar monthly since four years ago.

Japanese source:

Kagawa Prefecture School makes pamphlet to introduce its education program

The first pamphlet that the Kagawa Prefecture School for the Deaf published.

April 5, 2013

The Prefecture School for the Deaf located in Takamatsu-shi, Kagawa Prefecture in western Japan created the pamphlet which introduces its education program for the first time.

The pamphlet tells about the educational concept and the special feature of the school with a lot of using photographs and the illustration.

The school made 2000 copies to make the parents of the students and the local residents aware of the educational activities including each program from preschool through high school level as well as counseling services offered to the parents of Deaf children who are not enrolled at the school.

Japanese source:

Photographic album on the Deaf and the Atomic Bomb in Nagasaki-shi


The photographic album, titled Don ga Kikoenakatta Hitobito: The Deaf and the Atomic Bomb (写真集:ドンが聞こえなかった人々 - ISBN978-4-89259-170-9), by Mamezuka Takeshi (豆塚猛), a photographer from Kyoto was published in 1991.


In Nagasaki, there is one time period that ended at two minutes past eleven, and another moving ahead in a present progressive tense that began at two minutes past eleven, August 9, 1945.

Forty some years after the shift, people were made aware that part of the present progressive tense is the Nagasaki of people who were unable to hear the bomb's bang.

Much has been told and written of the experiences of the bombing victims with normal hearing. They have come to be well known.

Deaf and dumb victims, though, were passed by, a forgotten existence sunk in an abyss of silence.

English source:

Deaf woman becomes a teacher of the Deaf at her alma mater in Hokkaido

Tani Nanami started for her new assignment as a teacher of the Obihiro School for the Deaf in Obihiro-shi, Hokkaido, the northern island of Japan.

April 10, 2013

In the current fiscal year starting in April, 2013, Tani Nanami (谷奈々美), a 23-year-old Obihiro resident, became a teacher, which was her dream from the time of high school.

She, who is born-Deaf, was accepted by the special program for the persons with disabilities by the Hokkaido Board of Education, and started for her new assignment to the Obihiro School for the Deaf, her alma mater in April.

Tani graduated from the Miyagi University of Education special support education teacher training course in Miyagi Prefecture this spring.

The Obihiro School has two Deaf teachers currently. The vice-principal says, "A Deaf teacher can understand students and plays a role model for them."

Tani is mainly going to teach the second and third graders in the elementary program. She brightened eyes, saying "I will carry out the lesson which each student enjoys learning certainly."

Japanese source:

Hearing babies learn English through American Sign Language in Tokyo

April 8, 2013

According to TV Tokyo broadcast program which aired on April 8, "Hana House" located in Suginami-ku, Tokyo, has a program for the hearing infants. They are learning English using American Sign Language (ASL).

"Hana House" has offered programs focusing on English and music for young children since 2009.

"Hana House" website ( says they have seven staff members including five native English speakers and some with ASL skills.

Nippon Columbia, the Japanese record company which came to exist in 1946, says they will release ASL DVD, and then put on the market for those aged 3 and over in the future.

Private sector on efforts obligation by disabled person discriminating legalization

April 5, 2013

The person in charge of the Liberal Democratic Party, Komei, and Democratic  Party respectively, which aim at legislation of disabled person discriminating dissolution, held the meeting on April 5.

They agreed that while burdening the public sector with the legal liability when not carrying out reasonable accommodations for a persons with disability, a private enterprise company will be limited to efforts obligation.

The government will develop a bill based on the agreement and present it to the current Diet session.

The slope installation for a wheelchair user, etc. are assumed as part of reasonable accommodations.

In order to avoid a too heavy burden, a private enterprise company will be limited to efforts obligation. However, the regulation will require the company to report about the contents of enforcement, and will impose an administrative fine on a false report.

Although development of laws was called for ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, movement toward making a draft for the bill has been behind since last autumn.

Japanese source:

New law to dissolve discrimination against persons with disabilities to be enforced in 2016

April 10, 2013

The government provided the outline of a bill called the "disabled persons discriminating dissolution propulsion bill" (tentative name) to the person in charge of each party (the Liberal Democratic Party, Komei, and Democratic Party) on April 9.

In addition to education, public traffic, medical treatment, etc., government officials mentioned "criminal proceedings" in the field of the public sectors which will be the target of legal liability of discriminating dissolution.

As act enforcement time, it is considered for April, 2016. It is supposed that the law will be reviewed for improvement in the third year after the enforcement.

The government is planning to get a Cabinet decision on April 26, 2013 and to submit the bill in the current Diet session.

Japanese source:

After school day-care service for Deaf children begins in Kyoto

The children practice how to greet with the staff

April 6, 2013

Aiming at advancing a group activities for Deaf/deaf children who do not mingle with hearing children easily, Kyoto Welfare Association for the Deaf located in Kyoto-shi, Kyoto Prefecture began the after school day-care service project this spring in the Kyoto social welfare hall. The project will encourage the Deaf/deaf children play, do homework, etc. and spend a time together,

The association has provided the day-care service for the Deaf/deaf children during long vacation such as the summer vacation since 2009.

In response to the opinion from some parents having deaf children that their kid had no friend who could play after school, the association decided to start a weekday program.

Eight children registered participated in the opening ceremony on March 29.

Japanese source:

English articles on Deaf WWII survivors in Nagasaki and Hiroshima

The ”Japanese Deaf News,"  the Japanese Federation of the Deaf’s monthly newspaper, published in September, 2003, reported two events related to Deaf WWII survivors entitled: "A Deaf Survivor at the A-Bomb Memorial Peace Ceremony in Nagasaki" and "Construction of the Long-Desired Memorial Monument in Hiroshima"

These English articles are found on the following link.

Newly renamed "comprehensive support law for persons with disabilities" enforced in April

April 1, 2013

On April 1, 2013, the "Comprehensive Support Law for Persons with Disabilities" was enforced. In the law renamed from the "Law to Encourage Self-Reliance Among the Handicapped," an incurable disease, etc. were added to the definition of the persons with disabilities.

The new law has a clause that requires discussion on "the state of the support for the person who have trouble in communication such like a Deaf/deaf person, those with speech impairment, etc., including the dispatch of sign-language interpreters, etc.

Three political parties, the Liberal Democratic Party, Komei Party, and Democratic Party, held the first meeting of the working-level talks towards legislation of the ban on discrimination to a person with disability in the Diet on April 2.

"Prohibition of discrimination" defined by Disabled Persons' Fundamental Law is further materialized towards the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities of the United Nations.

If the parties reach the agreement, they will plan to submit to the current Diet session as a government-sponsored bill. The Liberal Democratic Party and Komei Party both showed three following proposals as a springboard for discussion:

1. A local government and a company make consideration of a person with disability by compulsory law.
2. Only a local government makes compulsory and limit a private sector to efforts duty.
3. Efforts duty for consideration by both local government and a company.

Japanese sources:

Event on America Sign Language and U.S. Deaf Community to be held in Tokyo

April, 2013

American Embassy will sponsor the meeting entitled "The United States society seen from American Sign Language (ASL) and a culture" on Friday, April 19, 2013, 18:30~21:00 at the American Embassy lodgings Daly Hall in Tokyo.

With the theme of "the American society and the culture seen from ASL", the participants will be provided an opportunity to learn social inclusion and the Deaf community in the U.S.

Languages: English, ASL, and Japanese Sign Language (sign-language interpreting provided)

Participants limited to 60 Japanese students up to 25 years old, including high school, college/university and graduate program

Participation fees: no charge

Tentative program:
1) A mini lecture on "ASL and American Deaf Community" given by a guest speaker Martin Dale-Hench of Michigan native in the U.S. He is born deaf and studied at Gallaudet University, D.C. with major in English literature.

2) Comparison of the Japan and the U.S. by the Deaf Japanese who had a studying-abroad experience.

3) Workshop in ASL

4) - U.S. studying-abroad mini consultation meeting by EducationUSA (only for those are interested)
- Exchange meeting with the participants and the lecturer (free leaving is possible)

Japanese source:

Masuda-shi first hires a certified sign language interpreter in Shimane Prefecture

Tane Ayuko receives a written appointment from Mayor Yamamoto (right)

April 2, 2013

Masuda-shi, Shimane Prefecture in western Japan made a sign language interpreter the full-time employee for the first time in the prefecture on April 1.

The city established the post for the certified sign language interpreter in the employment examination in January, 2013.

Tane Ayuko, 32, a Masuda resident, who passed the examination received the written appointment from Mayor Yamamoto Hiroaki in the city office on April 1.

Tane began to learn sign language in a circle in the city when she was 20 years old. She has employed sign language in work in a mobile phone store efficiently. She has passed the national qualification examination for sign language interpreters in 2010.

She is assigned to the life welfare division which takes charge of a disability measure, and plays the role to reflect opinions or requests from the Deaf community in the city administration.

Japanese source:

Deaf senior finishes junior high school, awarded for full attendance in Aichi Prefecture

March 30, 2013

A Deaf senior was introduced in the daily column of Asahi Shimbun newspaper, "Tensei, Jingo (天声人語)".

Kohsaka Mamoru,73, graduated from the night junior high school in Nagoya-shi, Aichi Prefecture.

He lost hearing and was hardly able to go to school in boyhood.

He made up his mind, after working as a stone craftsman.

For two years, Kohsaka learned in the night junior high school with full attendance and won the reward for it.

He said, "It was an instant . When I didn't work one day in my craftsman days, my daily allowance decreased. It is natural that I was not absent from the school."

Japanese source:

Deaf illustrator exhibits her works in Tokyo

Sugimoto Marina says she would like to convey the exciting feeling through her art works at the Teramachi art museum in Tokyo.

March 31, 2013

Sugimoto Marina, 26, a Deaf illustrator living in Meguro-ku, Tokyo, expresses the scenery of a town that a train and people go back and forth, and children's expression as well in a three-dimensional art. Her personal exhibition is held in the Teramachi art museum in Taito-ku, Tokyo on March 30 through April 7.

Marina was diagnosed as congenital auditory difficulties at the age of three. Until she was 9 years old, she changed the school
for the Deaf to another school 4 times. She was poor at the Japanese language drills using uniform teaching materials, unable to communicate with a classmate, too.

Only she concentrated on an thing that
interested her; she refused to pay attention to what the teacher said in the classroom.

Marina changed after she began attending the free school in Setagaya-ku, Tokyo. Her mother Kanae, 52, recalled, saying "They accepted Marina as a whole person."

Marina studied at the fine-arts modeling vocational school in Toshima-ku and graduated March, last year, following her dream of being an illustrator.

Marina invented the three-dimensional art in response to the stimulus in the work of an American pop artist James Rizzi which she saw by her mother's recommendation.

Japanese source:

Marriage counseling service for the Deaf starts in Hyogo Prefecture

March 27, 2013
Oshima Tamako, 59, who works as a care helper in Kobe-shi, Hyogo Prefecture, set up a marriage counseling office called the "Deaf Cupid" at her house two years and a half ago.

Oshima's effort seems unique across the country as she is trying to support a Deaf/deaf person who has few chances to find a marriage partner.

Ohshima is pushing the back of people who cannot get into marriage, taking advantage of her own experience to bring up two Deaf children who are already married.

Ten men and two women have been registered with the counseling service, and Ohshima says that she needs more clients.

Arranged marriage for the clients was held 10 times or more so far. There is a case that a couple developed to close relations, but no couple has gotten married yet.

Japanese source:

Principal punished by salary cut on the corporal punishment problem at deaf school in Osaka

 March 28, 2013

Two teachers of the Osaka Prefecture Ikuno School for the Deaf in Osaka-shi repeatedly hit on the head of the student who teased one of his classmate.

The prefecture board of education announced on March 17 that it would reduce the 60-year-old principal's salary by one month because he did not dealt appropriately with the corporal punishment problem by the teachers.

Japanese source:

Related link:
Teachers of Deaf children to be punished for abuse against disobedient student in Osaka Prefecture

Follow-up: Menu taken away from the counter of McDonald's

March 28, 2013

It seems that only Japan has put the menu on a check-out counter in the McDonald's store in the world.

The menu placed in front of a check-out counter was removed all at once on October 1, last year.
On the Internet such as the twitter or a bulletin board site, the opinions were one after another about the disappeared menu that caused troubles.

A journalist reported that he checked whether the counter menu was truly removed whenever he visited McDonald's at the different places in October, last year and afterwards. He figured out that about 200 out of the 3,300 McDonald's stores in Japan would keep a menu permanently on a counter.

About having removed the menu, McDonald's Co. Japan Ltd. Holdings officials made a comment that they are "collecting data" to find about the customer satisfaction and how much the customer services have improved.

Japanese source:

Related link:
Deaf customers unhappy without menu in McDonald's

Gusukuma Seiho (1614-1644): Oldest Deaf-mute painter in Ryukyu

"The Picture of Hakutaku" (『白澤之図』) by Jiryo (Seiho)
Gusukuma Seiho (城間清豊:1614-1644) was the oldest painter in Ryukyu (present Okinawa Prefecture), and his pen name was Jiryo (自了).

Seiho was Deaf-mute reportedly when he was born to the Shuri family's with samurai antecedents as the eldest son.

With his curiosity and aspiration which were stronger than any others, he studied pictures by himself through copying the outstanding pictures work.

Seiho won popularity as an excellent painter in his teens. King Shoho (尚豊) who heard about him, hired him as a professional painter for the Imperial Court with a pen name Jiryo that King gave him.

It is said that Jiryo's works were so excellent even if compared with the pictures of not only Ryukyu but ancient Japan or China.

However, Jiryo passed away at the age of 30, leaving many masterpieces as a painter representing Ryukyu.

One of masterpieces called "The Picture of Hakutaku" (『白澤之図』) (photo) is the only work of Jiryo that remains today, meanwhile the rest of his masterpieces were mostly disappeared at the time of Battle of Okinawa in 1945. Hakutaku is an imaginary animal which appears in a virtuous king's reign.

Japanese sources: