19th century fine netsuke of a swimming carp with its tail turned to the right and joining the pelvic and pectoral fins for compactness. Excellent rendition of pleasantly thick body, great carving of its scales and face, eyes are inlaid with dark horn. Very beautiful ink highlights, old age lines, superb patina (netsuke is of wonderful yellowish hue, photographed too white), in excellent condition. Signed MASANAO (for Masanao of Ise) on its cheek on the back - for the discussion of the group of carvers signing their work with this name see pp. 80-81 of COLLECTORS NETSUKE by Bushell. Exceptional netsuke, superb tribute to the Masanao of Kyoto, one of the nicest tactile objects that I have had. Length 2 1/8 inches.