Ivory netsuke of two sumo wrestlers in a match, each attempting to throw the other. Superbly carved (see their incised fingernails), wonderfully captured body bulks and dynamic poses, perfectly etched textures of their hair and loincloths. Signed NANRYU in rectangular reserve on the bottom - for information about the artist see CONTEMPORARY NETSUKE by Miriam Kinsey, p. 224. Excellent netsuke. Height 1 7/8 inches.
Original woodblock print BLUE THICKET by Joichi Hoshi (1913-1979), unlimited edition, printed in 1974. Excellent crisp print in perfect condition, silver metallic highlights, listed as plate 318 in JOICHI HOSHI CATALOGUE OF ALL TREE WOODBLOCK PRINTS published by Kato Gallery in 1988. Red “tree” seal of the artist in lower right corner, signed by the artist in pencil (see detail). Image size 6 1/4x8 7/8 inches, paper size 8x10 1/4 inches. Superb image, all that Hoshi print shall be.
Ivory netsuke of seated Jurojin holding a fan in his hand, with a minogame turtle crawling onto him. Jurojin is one of the 7 Gods of Good Fortune, usually associated with longevity, and minogame is a symbol of longevity as well. Wonderful carving - see the detailing of his face, incised fingernails, coat and carapace pattern of the turtle. Great quality staining leaving the beard and minogame’s tail bright white, beautiful patina. Signed HISAYUKI on the bottom, old collection on the bottom. Heig ...click for details
Ivory netsuke of a hare with its head raised alertly. Superb carving to the last detail, great face and realistic posture capturing the essence of the creature. Beautiful rendition of its body volume, eyes are double inlaid with light and dark horn, excellent patina. Signed IKUMI on the bottom followed by the seal of the artist - this excellent carver is the wife of Bishu, and her work is very rare. Fantastic sculpture, all that a great netsuke shall be. Height 2 3/16 inches.
Ivory netsuke of makatsugyo - a dragon-fish - in the process of transformation. The face is already that of a dragon, while limbs are still carp’s fins. According to a Chinese legend, a carp that can swim up the waterfall turns into a dragon, and thus serves as a paragon of perseverance, especially in scholarly pursuits. The creature is rarely depicted in netsuke. Superb clean carving, excellent detailing, beautiful inlays with black and transparent brown horn. Signed GODO on the bottom - for a b ...click for details
Ivory netsuke of a sitting courtier (recognizable by his tall hat) wearing formal garments and holding an open fan in his hands. Extremely well carved out of beautiful even ivory with cross-hatching pattern seen on the bottom of the piece. Excellent clean carving with expert polychrome decoration, wonderful level of detail, perfectly captured facial expression. Signed RYOSEI on the bottom - this very distinct carver is discussed in CONTEMPORARY NETSUKE by Miriam Kinsey, p. 225. Height 1 11/16 in ...click for details
Ivory netsuke of seated Hotei holding a hand drum on his shoulder. Hotei is incarnation of Maitreya - the Buddha of the future - and one of the Seven Gods of Good Fortune, the fat and happy God of abundance and good health. Very nice carving with good level of detail (see his feet and finely worked texture of his robe), wonderful smiling face, nice patina. Signed SHOZO on the bottom - the artist is listed on p. 984 of NETSUKE & INRO ARTISTS AND HOW TO READ THEIR SIGNATURES by George Lazarnic ...click for details
Ivory netsuke of an owl sitting on a tree stump with fresh branches and leaves. Excellent quality detailed carving, wonderful face with somewhat puzzled expression, beautiful depiction of differentiated feathers, pleasant patina, eyes are inlaid with black horn. Signed MASAMITSU (alternative reading is Shoko) on the bottom. Wonderful netsuke by the master carver. Height 1 5/8 inches.
Ivory netsuke of a resting goat - one of the 12 Zodiac animals - with its head turned to the left. Excellent carving with clean lines conveying the essence of the creature’s character, great rendition of animal’s fur, no breaks, chips or repairs. Beautiful patina, eyes are inlaid with dark horn. Signed YUKITOMO on the bottom. Height 1 1/8 inches.
Japanese ivory okimono of a standing actor in a role of a shojo with a fan in his hand. Shojo are mythical creatures living near the sea, and are particularly fond of sake. Superb quality carving with excellent face and minute detailing - see the fingernails, hair texture and textile patterns. Beautiful warm patina, details highlighted by paint and golden lacquer, in excellent condition. Signed SEIGETSU on inlaid cinnabar plaque on the bottom - the artist is listed in CONTEMPORARY NETSUKE by Mir ...click for details