Tall and shallow zushi or portable shrine with the painting of the Kasuga mandala, mounted on a lotus base. From the saddle of the white deer rises the branch of the sacred Sakaki tree. In the branch is a disc with Buddha Shakyamuni in the middle, surrounded by the bodhisattvas Jizo, Kannon and Monju and Yakushi Nyorai. In the background, above a cloud, Mount Mikasa and the Kasuga shrine and the sun above. Polychromed and gilded wood. Japan, early Edo period, late 17th century.
Height of zushi: ca. 19 ½ inches.
Chips and damages to lacquer on outside. Condition inside excellent. Handwritten label on back: made in Japan.
Belief in the Kasuga deity was popular in the Heian/Kamakura periods, as it links Shinto and Buddhist deities. The worship did continue into the Edo period.
Cylindrical zushi or portable shrine of the proto-type as imported from China. In the center sits Amida Nyorai, surrounded by attendants. On the left door sits Seishi, on the right door Kannon, each surrounded by attendants as well. Outside covered in red lacquer, with gilding. The inside plain dark brown wood, with gilding on the edges. Japan, Edo period, 18th century.
H 7 ¼ x Diameter 2 ¾ inches.
Tip of left hand panel broken off.
Zushi in the shape of a Shinto shrine housing a carving of a curled up snake, it tongue out. Glass pane behind the double doors. Left door inscribed with dedication by the donor. Inside, behind the snake, inscription in black ink, referring to Fudo Myoo and Marishiten. Sugi-wood (cryptomeria) shrine with light wood carving. Japan, Meiji or Taisho era (1910s-1920s).
H 8 ½ x W 6 ¾ x D 3 ¾ inches
Few abrasions, back pane re-stuck with iron nail
Cast iron kakebotoke or votive plaque for a Buddhist temple or house shrine, showing Amida Nyorai in low relief with repousse in mandorla. Japan, Meiji era, 19/20th century.
Diameter 6 ¼ inches
Hanging scroll with image of the descent of the Buddha to welcome the souls of the deceased and accompany them to the Western Paradise. He is standing on a lotus on clouds and holds his hand in gebon josho. The mudra is the appropriate level for common citizens to be reborn in. Mineral colors and gold on silk. The garment exquisitely decorated in gold. Japan, late Muromachi or early Edo period, 16th century.
Image: 38 ¼ X 15 ¾ inches. Mounting: 84 ¼ x 21 3/8 inches.
Missing areas throughout the silk, mainly in the background. Beautifully stabilized.
Large Buddhist shrine with ‘double doors’, holding the figure of the three-eyed Shomen Kongo in his appearance with six arms, accompanied by four attendants. He is adorned with a skull necklace, bracelets in the shape of coiled snakes around his arms and ankles, holding halberd and chakra, bow and arrow, sword and human being, trampling on a demon. Initially Shomen was a pest spreading demon who after conversion to Buddhism became a guardian deity against wild animals, demons spreading disease and love(!) and against the wild weather deities. Wood decorated in mineral colors and gold, gilded sheet metal for mandorla, attributes and crown. Japan, Edo period, early 19th, perhaps late 18th century.
H of case ca. 15 ½ inches.
Case with damages, figure group with some scuffs, losses and repairs, all in all good and stable and original condition.
Extremely rare. A pair of hand shrines for husband and wife, showing on the inside the bodhisattva Fugen (larger one) and Monju (smaller one). Monju – on the lion - is holding a nyoi scepter, while Fugen – on the elephant – holds a lotus flower topped by a pagoda. Extremely fine carving, especially fine in the rendering of the lion and the elephant with exquisite painting in mineral colors, gofun and gold. The outside of each shrine covered in fine nashiji lacquer, over which in slightly raised gold lacquer a Tokugawa mon on the cover and the same mon on the back in silver. The zushi must have been made by special order for someone in the Tokugawa family line. Japan, Edo period, early 19th century.
H 2-½ inches; 2-9/16 inches.
Comes with kiri-wood storage box.
Fugen and Monju bosatsu (Compassion and Wisdom) are the two bodhisattva that accompany the historical Buddha Shakyamuni / Shaka Nyorai.
Very large Buddhist shrine holding the figure of the senju-sengen Kannon, the 1000-armed and 1000-eyed Kannon. In this form he embodies compassion that sees suffering and acts to relieve it. He is connected to the six realms, saving hungry ghosts. The sculpture actually has 42 arms and 13 heads. The main hands are folded in prayer; the others are holding (pairs of) attributes. His head is adorned with an intricate golden crown, his chest with golden necklace. Gilded wood with some red and black paint; thin gilded metal and tiny glass beads. Japan, Edo period, 18th century.
H of case: ca. 24 inches.
Few traces of usage. 3 cracks in the face, few cracks on arms. Otherwise excellent original condition.
Zushi with beautiful hardware on the front; inside the figure of Yakushi Nyorai (medicine Buddha), sitting on a high lotus throne, holding the medicine jar in his left hand and with his right hand making the gesture of picking medical herbs. He is surrounded by 16 rakan, painted onto the inside of the doors (not decals). On the mardorla behind his head two apsara are painted, playing the sho and the flute. High quality carving. Wood decorated in mineral colors and gold. Japan, Edo period, likely late 18th century, perhaps early 19th century at the latest.
H of case ca. 9 ¼ inches.
Painting on the doors a bit darkened, slightly chipping; some lotus petal with tiny chip, otherwise in very good condition.
Nichiren Buddhist shrine with the sculpture of Kishimojin holding an infant in her left arm and raising her right hand in a kind of mudra. Wood beautifully decorated in mineral colors and gold. Japan, Edo period, around 1800.
H of case ca. 9 ½ inches.
Paint a bit flaking at top of figure, otherwise very good condition.
Kishimojin, or Kariteimoten originally was a demon who had a thousand children. Still she would eat the children of others. Buddha’s teachings converted her. She is a guardian deity of Buddhism, especially of small children. In Nichiren Buddhism she is venerated as guardian deity for easy birth and raising children.
She sometimes is shown as a standing figure, sometimes in the shape of a male demon, more often as a female figure with a baby in her arms and several small children around her. In one of her hands she may hold a pomegranate (symbol of fertility) that Shakyamuni gave her to bite into, if she felt a craving for children’s flesh. The male and female, demonic and human shapes sometimes merge, showing her different aspects in one statue.
Several different states of Kishimojin can be found in our listings.
Buddhist shrine showing the Amida triad (Amida sanzon), coming out of Paradise to meet the dying and accompany their souls to the Western Paradise. In the middle stands Amida Nyorai, both his hands in mudra. To his right Kannon bosatsu holding the lotus and to his left Seishi bosatsu with his hands folded in prayer. Very well carved soft wood, such as sugi, stained a beautiful brown. The figures are all sunk into the bottom of the zushi. Japan, Edo period, 19th century.
H case ca. 12 inches.
A few breaks repaired (mainly in the mandorlas), all in all very good condition.
Nichiren Buddhist shrine with the image of Kishimojin inside in demonic appearance, her hands folded in prayer. Wood sculpture with beautifully painted details. Eyes inlaid in glass or crystal. Japan, Edo period around 1800.
H of case 12 inches.
Sculpture of Shomen Kongo, standing with 6 arms, holding ghanta and sword, bow and arrow, halberd and chakra. Shomen Kongo protects against demons and diseases. Wood stained black, with metal parts. Japan, Edo period, shortly after 1800.
H ca. 11 inches.
Sword missing, few traces of usage. All in all very good condition.
Small shrine holding the image of the Buddha Dainichi Nyorai, sitting on a lotus base, before a circular mandorla. Doors decorated on the inside with an exquisitely painted motif of star-shaped flowers. Wood decorated in mineral colors and gold. Very high quality. Thin metal for mandorla and crown. Japan, Edo period, 18th century.
H of case ca. 5 inches.
Most of the crown missing, some traces of usage but all in all in excellent condition.
Small shrine containing the figure of the sitting 11 headed Kannon, holding a flask in his left hand, his head crowned with the 10 heads of the different Buddhist deities, including Amida. He is sitting on a lotus throne that holds inside the figure of a reclining lion. The back of the zushi has a small moveable segment (now glued shut) that is supposed to reveal something in the base of the Kannon. The doors are decorated with inscribed ihai or ancestral tablets set in a field of autumn flowers and river. Japan, late Edo period, 19th century.
H of case 7 inches.
Traces of usage, mainly on the in- and outside of the case, moveable segment glued.
Small shrine with a wooden sculpture of Jizo, standing with a jewel in one hand (which are missing), his staff (which is missing) in the other. Here he is represented as Danda Jizo, assisting those who are suffering in hell and saving small children from the wheel of rebirth. The paintings on the doors show naked children chased by demons in hell. Polychromed wood with delicate details. Metal madorla. Japan, late Edo period, around 1800.
Height zushi: ca. 7 ½ inches.
Paintings on the doors rubbed, hardware fragile but functional. Jizo’s hands and attributes missing, glue stains on his back and feet.
Rare subject. Painting on the left door shows a human pleading with a demon holding a giant club, while below a child is being led away by a female soul. The right hand door shows a large red demon with club, chasing a child, while mothers seem to be wailing.
Shrine with a wooden sculpture of Shichimen Daimyojin in sitting pose, one leg crossed over the other. She sits on the summit of mount Shichimen, one of her shoes by her side, holding a (golden) jewel in her left hand and another object, likely a key that is now missing, in her right hand. The wood decorated with gold and mineral colors. Metal mandorla behind her head, decorated with flaming jewels. Japan, late Edo period, late 18th century.
Height zushi: ca. 11 inches
Some cracks in the wood, flaking lacquer at the base, some cracks in the lacquer on the figure, stabilized with clear finish, all in all in stable condition
Shichimen Daimyojin is the protectress of Minobu, the site of temple Kuonji, general quarters of the Nichiren sect and burial place of the founder of the sect. Mount Shichimen is south of Minobu.
Unusually large sculpture of Daruma, made of a large stone grown into a tree’s root section. This phenomenon is referred to as ishikui (eating stone), ishidake (holding stone) or ishikami (stone gods).
Height: 25.5 inches; width at widest point: ca. 15 inches. Japan, 19th century.
Patina somewhat rubbed at top of the head and shoulders, due to handling, few nicks and chips, all in all very good condition.
Pieces like these are fairly rare and the height is usually around 12 inches. The stone is swallowed up by the tree, while it is growing. It is a phenomenon highly appreciated in bonsai, in which case the tree is manipulated into surrounding the stone. In large, this is a more natural occurrence, growing to look like a person wrapped in a garment, such as Kan’on and, less frequent, Daruma.