Call out : I want to see your drawings of the Japanese healing monster, AMABIE, the myth goes: if you draw me the plague will subside, let’s do it!

Dear Shaded Viewers,

This is an ancient Japanese healing monster”Amabie”. In Japan, there is a tradition in 1846 that “Amabie” emerged from the sea and she prophesied, “If you show people a picture of my painting, the plague will subside” Now, there is a trend in Japan to draw and distribute this “Amabie”.

Amabie (アマビエ) is a legendary Japanese mermaid or merman with 3 legs, who allegedly emerges from the sea and prophesies either an abundant harvest or an epidemic.

It appears to be a variant of the amabiko (アマビコ, , あま彦also amahiko), otherwise known as the amahiko-nyūdo (), and arie (アリエ), which are depicted as ape-like, bird-like, or torso-less (cephalopod-like), and usually 3-legged.

An amabie appeared in Higo Province (Kumamoto Prefecture) according to legend, around the middle of the fourth month, in the year Kōka-3 (mid-May, 1846) in the Edo era. A glowing object had been spotted in the sea, almost on a nightly basis. The town’s official went to the coast to investigate, and witnessed the amabie. According to the sketch made by this official, it had long hair, a mouth like bird’s bill, was covered in scales from the neck down, and three-legged. Addressing the official, it identified itself as an amabie and told him that it lived in the open sea. It went on to deliver a prophecy: “Good harvest will continue for six years from the current year;[a] if disease spreads, show a picture of me to those who fall ill and they will be cured.” Afterward, it returned to the sea. The story was printed in the kawaraban [ja] (woodblock-printed bulletins), where its portrait was printed, and this is how the story disseminated in Japan.[1][2]

What do you think? Should we all try our hand at drawing the ancient Japanese healing monster “Amabie”? I have to check now with Akiko and Shoji to see how they feel about this. I found some images on line to inspire your personal artwork. Send it to me so I can post it.



Diane Pernet

A LEGENDARY FIGURE IN FASHION and a pioneer of blogging, Diane is a respected journalist, critic, curator and talent-hunter based in Paris. During her prolific career, she designed her own successful brand in New York, costume designer, photographer, and filmmaker.