Large Japanese antique oshi-e ningyo(doll), Kabuki samurai "aragoto" actor on stage: Matsumoto Oshi-e bina (hina ningyo in Oshi-e style) was originally made by the
Samurai family who served in the Matsumoto Castle to supplement their income sometime in the mid Edo period (1603-1868). They became quite quite popular in the 1800s, 400 million dollars sale (in current currency) was recorded in 1888. The characteristics of Matsumoto Oshi-e ningyo (dolls) are that the design is stuffed heavily with cotton and the faces are painted in Ukiyo-e (the floating world of Edo period) style. It is very rare to
find old Oshi-e dolls in this quality and size today.
The popularity of oshi-e ningyo (dolls) declined when steam engines spread throughout Japan and made more goods (Hina dolls in this case) accessible to the local regions. The production of Matsumoto Oshi-e ended in the late Meiji period (1868-1912). Today, there is one couple in Matsumoto who revived the art and has been making the dolls for the last 40 years. If you can frame this piece on fabric or paper (old man's kimono?), it will make a wonderful wall hanging and decoration piece.
Circa, late Meiji Period (1868-1912).
Dimensions: 9 1/2 inches width x 12 inches tall