This 19th century Japanese carved ivory okimono measures approximately 9 inches tall by 2 1/2 inches in diameter at it's widest point.
It is intricately carved with fully delineated scales and teeth on the fish. The figure riding a fish is carved from one solid walrus tusk and it sits on a separate oval section as a base. The crystalline pattern that is so indicative of walrus ivory can be seen in many places on the carving, including Kinko's robe (interior front left) and the belly of the carp or koi.
It dates from the Meiji Period in Japan (circa 1870-1900).
It is in very good condition with some stabilized antique ivory fractures as are seen on many of these okimonos that are well over 100 years old.
Japan originally imported and adapted many Taoist and Buddhist teachings from China, which were then combined with native Shinto beliefs.
One Taoist figure incorporated into Japanese artwork was Kinko, a holy hermit. He is often depicted mounted on the enormous carp that carried him to the Undersea Kingdom. There, sea creatures taught him that all life is sacred.
In Japan the carp (koi) is also a symbol of persistence, longevity, and fertility. Land-locked farmers have kept carp in their ponds to provide food for centuries and also bred them for their beautiful colors.
This original carved "oosik" or penis bone measures about 11 inches long by 1 inch wide by 1 1/2 inches in depth at it's wide at the base.
Although it has the appearance of ivory, it is actually carved from heavily fossilized walrus penile bone. It is much harder than traditional ivory and as such has been used by native people for generations to producing knives and important implements.
This is likely a fertility totem in as much as it has a hooded woman riding a phallus with the raven and a stylized bear above her.
A work of this quality would have taken a great deal of time talent and effort to create.
The workmanship and details of the carving are outstanding and can honestly be described as museum quality.
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This MUSEUM QUALITY NORTH WEST COAST FIGURAL TOTEM was carved from one solid walrus tusk.
It dates circa 1890-1910.
It measures 25 inches long by about 2 1/4 inches diameter at the base.
It is carved overall with an amazing assortment of carved figures, including many native animals and other tribal figural icons.
It is in outstanding condition, with a wonderful ivory patina and age cracks. Virtually all of the 17+ carved figures have abalone eyes and are beautifully detailed and polished.
The photo enlargements do not begin to do it justice. This is truly a one of a kind item and guaranteed to be antique and authentic.
This ORIGINAL CARVED IVORY FIGURE OF THREE MONKEYS measures about 2 inches (5 cm) tall by 2 inches in diameter.
It is an extraordinarily detailed carving which can only be truly appreciated with a magnifying glass. My poor photos only begin to show the extent of it's quality.
It IS UNSIGNED and dates to the late 19th or early 20th century.
The subject is the "See no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil" motif that was popular back then.
This antique Japanese okimono is in outstanding condition, except for one missing fingertip, on one of the sixty fully carved and articulated fingers or toes that this museum quality carving has.
This intricately carved ivory boat with over fifty figures carved in varous positons of repose measures about 12 inches long by 3 inches tall by 2 inches in depth.
The boat has many finely detailed areas of carved scrollwork throughout.
It dates from the late 19th Century to the early 20th Century.
It is in excellent condition except for a few small losses. A few of the fully functional latticework shutters are missing or incomplete. One of the intricate carved dragons below the boat is incomplete. One or two of the removeable flags or parasols are missing. Even so, this piece is an outstanding example of a lost art:ivory carving so fine it shows up better under a magnifying glass.
Although the color appears to be pure white in most of the photographs, it actually is a wonderfully patinated very pale caramel color. It was necessary to adjust the pictures to show off the details, hence the white color. In addition to a wonderful aged color, it also has obvious graining along the base. It is, of course, guaranteed to be a genuine antique ivory carving and NOT a copy of any kind (it is NOT bone, plastic ivory molded or any other method of reproduction).
This pair of original ivory carvings each measures approximately 6 inches tall by 3 1/2 to 4 inches wide by 2 to 2 1/2 inches in depth.
They both date from the middle of the 20th century. Each of them is signed on the underside of the base of the ivory carving (see photo).
They are both in excellent condition with no damage, losses or repairs to the ivory carvings themselves. One of the wooden stands appears to have been repaired at some point in time.
These two figures are guaranteed to be authentic ivory carvings, period. They are NOT any form of ivory reproduction, including bone, plastic ivory, or any other type of imitation ivory.
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Each one of this pair of original carved ivory Fu lions, kirin, or Fu dogs measures about 3 1/2 by 2/3/4 by 1 1/4 inches, not including the wooden stands they sit on.
The pair of ivory carvings date from the early to middle 20th century in China.
They are in good condition, except for a few old repairs and the loss of the tip of one ear. They are a well patinated honey color with variations in tone throughout.
They are guaranteed to be genuine ivory carvings and are NOT imitations of any kind. They have areas that include the traditional crosshatched lines that should be found on any genuine ivory carvings.
They also have small cabachon blue gemstones (possibly turquoise) inset for eyes.
This small, four panel folding table screen is inset with carved ivory & stone motifs and figural groups.
It measures about 22 inches wide (5.5 inches width each panel) by 20 inches tall.
It dates from the late 18th century to the very early 20th century.
It is has over 33 carved ivory, bone or carved stone groupings in addition the it's overall painted motif.
It is in very good condition, but with minor cracks or shrinkage of the mounted wooden panels as should be expected of something this old.