Skull Mushroom, Mount Osore, Japan, 2011

Skull Mushroom, Mount Osore, Japan

 

The Skull Mushroom is one of the most unique mushrooms only grows at the Mount Osore in Aomori Prefecture in Japan. It is called “skull” because the cap of this mushroom produces the pattern resembles a pair of human skulls in the back and front. This large species (12.5 inch) is called Oh-dokuro-dake (lit. Big Skull Mushroom) . Hime-dokuro-dake (lit. Princess Skull Mushroom) is smaller and Oni-dokuro-dake (lit. Devil Skull Mushroom) is orange red. This bizarre-looking mushroom has been used by Itako (female shamans who are also healer, and exorcist at Mount Osore) for many centuries for its magical hallucinogenic medicinal purposes and spiritual rituals. Mysteriously, unusually large numbers of skull mushrooms sprang out at Mount Osore after The 2011 Tōhoku earthquake, officially named the Great East Japan Earthquake (東北地方太平洋沖地震, とうほくちほうたいへいようおきじしん, lit. North Eastern Japanese Earthquake, 9.0 magnitude, ) and tsunami of March 11, 2011, 14:46 Japan Standard Time, which caused over 15, 000 deaths in Japan.

 

Many faithful and spiritual locals consider this extremely rare paranormal phenomena as those people killed by this earthquake reincarnated into this special mushrooms for guarding the Gate of Hell at mount Osore, so that this earthquake’s victems would all go to Budddah’s land and the Heaven.

 

The last time when this many skull mushroom sprang out was happen in the fall of 1923, which was only a month after the Great Kantō Earthquake (関東大震災, Kantō daishinsai) struck the Kantō plain on the Japanese main island of Honshū at 11:58:44 am JST on September 1, 1923, which was the deadliest earthquake ever to strike Japan up until this year’s Tōhoku Earthquake. For this year’s Itako Taisai festival to be held at the Bodau-ji Buddhist Temple at Mount Osore on July 20, 2011, unlike previous years, extremely large number of skull mushrooms are scheduled to be used for the ritual called kuchiyose, which seasoned itako claim to summon the souls of the dead, and deliver messages in their voices for faithful followers.

 

Note1: Mount Osore (恐山, Osorezan) is a region in the center of remote Shimokita Peninsula of Aomori Prefecture, Japan. According to popular mythology, Mount Osore (literally "Mount Fear") marks the entrance to Hell, with a small brook running to the neighboring Lake Usorisan that is equated to the Sanzu River, the Japanese equivalent to Styx. The reputation is not surprising, given that the very volcanically-active site is a charred landscape of blasted rock filled with bubbling pits of unearthly hues and noxious fumes.

 

Note2: An itako is a traditional, blind, usually female shaman from northern Japan. Itako are said to have the ability to communicate with the dead, even to evil spirits due to their intense spiritual power. They also had the power to remove evil spirit from one's body mind. Usually, older Itakos are more powerful than the new Itakos.

 

Note3: The Bodai-ji ("Bodai Temple") presides over Mount Osore and organizes the area's main event, the twice-yearly Itako Taisai festival. The grand festival is held over a period of five days beginning on July 20. In a ritual called kuchiyose (口寄せ), blind mediums known as itako claim to summon the souls of the dead and deliver messages in their voices.

 

Note4: The 1923 Great Kantō Earthquake (関東大震災, Kantō daishinsai) struck the Kantō plain on the Japanese main island of Honshū at 11:58:44 am JST on September 1, 1923. Varied accounts hold that the duration of the earthquake was between 4 and 10 minutes. The Kantō quake killed between 100,000 and 140,000 people, making it the deadliest earthquake ever to strike Japan which was the deadliest earthquake ever to strike Japan up until 2011 Tōhoku Earthquake. The quake had a magnitude of 7.9 on the Richter scale, with its focus deep beneath Izu Ōshima Island in Sagami Bay.

 

 

===========================================

 

Reference: Dr. Takeshi Yamada as “Immortalizer” of the AMC cable television competitive fine art reality show, “Immortalized”, season 1, aired in 2013:

www.amctv.com/shows/immortalized

www.facebook.com/ImmortalizedAMC?filter=1

www.amctv.com/shows/immortalized/cast/takeshi-yamada

blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/immortalized-cast-photos/...

blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/immortalized-season-1-cas...

www.imdb.com/media/rm471641344/tt2631416

blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/immortalized-season-1-cas...

www.nydailynews.com/entertainment/tv-movies/nyc-taxidermy...

blogs.amctv.com/movie-blog/2013/02/immortalized-takeshi-y...

www.amctv.com/immortalized/videos/spoilers-the-final-reve...

blogs.amctv.com/photo-galleries/immortalized-season-1-epi...

amusingthezillion.com/2012/11/29/coney-island-taxidermist...

amusingthezillion.com/2013/01/30/video-of-the-day-meet-ta...

www.ign.com/videos/2013/01/29/immortalized-meet-takeshi-y...

www.amctv.com/immortalized/videos/on-air-trailer-wood-duc...

www.amctv.com/immortalized/videos/on-air-trailer-real-ori...

www.youtube.com/watch?v=H0i6KqUN22E

www.youtube.com/watch?v=2iLUTs-KSXI

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bdxsl1HI5a4

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Nwsz0nRnWJg

www.youtube.com/watch?v=b8SrTXdjikw

mm.gettyimages.com/mm/nicePath/gyipa_public?nav=pr181713719

www.amctv.com/real-original-thursdays

www.hollywood.com/photos/tv/55000551/amc-s-immortalized-t...

www.hollywood.com/photos/tv/55000551/amc-s-immortalized-t...

www.poptower.com/news-52146/freakshow-immortalized-tv-sho...

iamturbo.com/new-taxidermy-reality-show-to-star-coney-isl...

tv.yahoo.com/news/amc-pits-taxidermists-against-each-othe...

animalnewyork.com/2013/new-taxidermy-reality-show-to-star...

www.sheepsheadbites.com/2013/02/takeshi-yamada-immortalized/

blogs.smithsonianmag.com/artscience/2013/02/outrageous-ta...

tv.nytimes.com/2013/02/14/arts/television/immortalized-an...

www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/freakshow-immortalized-t...

www.monstersandcritics.com/smallscreen/news/article_17114...

www.rlslog.net/immortalized-s01e01-hdtv-x264-bajskorv/

trailerrss.com/immortalized-amc-series-premiere-promo

thegame4.com/immortalized-clip-meet-takeshi-yamada/

www.outdoorhub.com/news/man-vs-fur-amcs-new-competitive-t...

www.avclub.com/articles/freakshowimmortalized,92526/

blogs.amctv.com/movie-blog/2013/02/freakshow-immortalized...

www.todayifoundout.com/index.php/2013/02/amcs-immortalized/

blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2013/02/immortalized-tax...

www.factpile.com/8874-watch-immortalized-on-amc/

www.hollywood.com/photos/tv/55000551/amc-s-immortalized-t...

twitpic.com/c1q9rx

www.michigandaily.com/blog/wire/alumni-profile-takeshi-ya...

art-design.umich.edu/news/takeshi_yamada_featured_on_amcs...

www.youtube.com/watch?v=2FoD-OptXgk

www.youtube.com/watch?v=e9aROKs_iSQ

www.youtube.com/watch?v=4msQyZqOrOY&NR=1&feature=...

www.gothic.net/immortalized-amc-taxidermy/immortalizer-ta...

www.gothic.net/immortalized-amc-taxidermy/immortalized-co...

www.gothic.net/immortalized-amc-taxidermy/

www.gothic.net/immortalized-amc-taxidermy/immortalized-co...

www.gothic.net/immortalized-episode-3-the-odyssey/

www.dragonblogger.com/about-immortalized-amcs-new-unscrip...

idownloadg.eu/tag/size-matters/

horrorboom.com/tag/takeshi-yamada/

 

 

Reference (newspaper articles and reviews):

www.cvltnation.com/god-of-freakstakeshi-yamada/

online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704828104576021750...

www.villagevoice.com/2006-11-07/nyc-life/the-stuffing-dre...

karlshuker.blogspot.com/2011/06/giant-sea-serpents-and-ch...

amusingthezillion.com/2011/12/08/takeshi-yamadas-jersey-d...

amusingthezillion.com/2010/12/07/art-of-the-day-freak-tax...

amusingthezillion.com/2010/10/27/oct-29-at-coney-island-l...

amusingthezillion.com/2010/09/18/photo-of-the-day-takeshi...

amusingthezillion.com/2009/11/07/thru-dec-31-at-coney-isl...

4strange.blogspot.com/2009/02/ten-of-takeshi-yamada-colle...

www.flickr.com/photos/museumofworldwonders/5440224421/siz...

www.gobrooklynart.org/studio/takeshiyamada

spexyandheknowsit.tumblr.com/post/42840993672/spexy-guy-d...

www.teoti.com/art-comics/15119-takeshi-yamada-s-creative-...

pinterest.com/lmartin84/taxidermy-i-know-it-s-weird/

secretscienceclub.blogspot.com/2007/11/long-live-taxiderm...

www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/34/48/24_taxidermycontest_2...

boingboing.net/2006/11/21/takeshi-yamadas-curi.html

 

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Takeshi_Yamada

www.digplanet.com/wiki/Takeshi_Yamada

 

Reference (fine art websites):

www.roguetaxidermy.com/members_detail.php?id=528

www.brooklynartproject.com/photo/photo/listForContributor...

www.bsagarts.org/member-listing/takeshi-yamada/

www.horseshoecrab.org/poem/feature/takeshi.html

www.artfagcity.com/2012/09/06/recommended-go-brooklyn-stu...

 

Reference (flickr):

www.flickr.com/photos/takeshiyamadaimmortalized/

www.flickr.com/people/searabbit16/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit15/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit14/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit13

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit12

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit11

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit10

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit9/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit8/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit7

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit6

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit5/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit4/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit2/

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit1/

www.flickr.com/photos/museumofworldwonders3/

www.flickr.com/photos/museumofworldwonders2

www.flickr.com/photos/museumofworldwonders/

www.flickr.com/photos/takeshiyamadapaintings/

 

Reference (other videos):

www.youtube.com/watch?v=otSh91iC3C4

www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhIR-lz1Mrs

www.youtube.com/watch?v=BttREu63Ksg

 

Reference (videos featuring sea rabbits and Dr. Takeshi Yamada):

www.amctv.com/immortalized/videos/who-is-takeshi-yamada-i...

www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ek-GsW9ay0

www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJK04yQUX2o&feature=related

www.youtube.com/watch?v=XrCCxV5S-EE

www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q0QnW26dQKg&feature=related

www.youtube.com/watch?v=GpVCqEjFXk0

www.youtube.com/watch?v=5NlcIZTFIj8&feature=fvw

www.youtube.com/watch?v=8UPzGvwq57g

s87.beta.photobucket.com/user/katiecavell/media/NYC%2008/...

www.animalnewyork.com/2012/what-are-you-doing-tonight-con...

www.youtube.com/watch?v=oeAdsChmSR8

www.ign.com/videos/2013/01/29/immortalized-meet-takeshi-y...

superforest.org/2010/11/takeshi-yamada-rogue-taxidermist/

 

Reference (sea rabbit artifacts)

www.wondersandmarvels.com/2012/06/coney-island-sea-rabbit...

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/5417188428/in/photostream

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/5417189548/in/photostream

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/5416579163/in/photostream

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/5417191794/in/photostream

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/5417192426/in/photostream

www.flickr.com/photos/searabbit3/5417192938/in/photostream

www.thewheelhousereview.com/2012/07/18/person-of-interest...

crappytaxidermy.com/page/25

 

(updated March 4, 2013)

 

takeshiyamada.weebly.com

 

For any questions, please contact Dr. Takeshi Yamada via his official art website and his email there. See the first page and/or the last page of this website for details.

 

35,946 views
31 faves
6 comments
Taken on February 23, 2011