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Fox Spirit Design

Wall Tile 8x8” Foo Dog Fetch

Regular price $22.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $22.00 USD
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Featured image: Foo Dog Fetch Guardian spirits are depicted in many forms throughout the world. Commonly called foo dogs ("foo" refers to their connection to Buddhist temples; they are also known by other names, such as "koma inu" in Japan, literally "lion dogs"), these creatures originated in ancient China, and then, as now, the translation of something from one culture to another left it changed in the process. These “dogs” are actually meant to represent benevolent guardian spirits in the shape of lions, but the story goes that the first artists attempting to create the likeness of creatures they had only heard tell of from travelers modeled them on the nearest creature they knew: dogs. Over time, then, high class Chinese people favoured dogs who looked more leonid, and many of today’s breeds reflect this influence, just as the statues continued to have a canine cast long after lions were well-known. Lions were thought to be calm and wise, and the first of what we know today as foo dogs were carved as statues at the entrances to Buddhist temples, protecting against the entrance or interference of malevolent spirits. There are many further details involved in the proper depiction of these noble spirits, who traditionally appear in balanced pairs of male and female, each with their own aspects. Both the complexity of the mythology as well as the fact that my own dog at the time, with her flowing golden mane, was often compared to a lion, caught my attention and called to my creativity. Even my dog’s name, Kyrie, derived from an ancient Greek word often translated as “lord” or “master” but which can also be interpreted as “guardian” or “protector”… how could I resist drawing her as a foo dog? That was the beginning of an addiction. Here is the first portrait of my best friend. These lightweight wall tiles are 8x8” wide & about 3/4” deep, ready to mount on any hard (non-fibrous) surface. Non-permanent bonding strip on the back allows you to rearrange or move your art without damaging your walls or other surfaces so you can have the art you love wherever you are! No frame required: just peel, stick, and enjoy.