netsuke and sagemono lounge : Disclaimer - Please click anywhere on this bar to expand/contract the content.

shojo

A forum to share and discuss Contemporary Netsuke
User avatar
Vlad
Posts: 5079
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 6:59 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY

Postby Vlad » Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:30 am

Oh, and one more thing about the consistent accuracy in general. There are hundreds of thousands of people shooting at the shooting range every year, but only a few make it to the Olympics.
It is a skill as any other, and only a few can make it to the top, or even near. And it is only about what one can afford in the end...
"Man sieht nur, was man weiß" - "One sees only what one knows". Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

fkc
Posts: 469
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:17 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland, UK
Contact:

Postby fkc » Mon Jan 17, 2011 7:58 am


"fk, it seems people commonly argue that artists should have produced their best pieces every time (and just throw away or not sign their lesser works?), as if nobody can have an off day..."

True, but an artist rarely loses the skills acquired through experience, even if a later piece is uninspired. I'm neither arguing that the pieces are by one carver, nor by two, but, rather, that the carving styles and skills differ and one seems, from a carving point of view, less assured than the other. I could be wrong, though.

Just to keep the pot boiling, another conjecture might be that they're by the same artist, but at an earlier and a later stage in his career. Ultimately, it seems, all we can accomplish is conjecture as we know little about the pieces or dates when they were carved.
"What do you do when you carve a less than satisfactory line, throw it away?"

It depends on the artist or carver. Some carvers who make a living from their work will, on occasions, sell some of the work they're less than happy with, while some won't sell what they feel is sub-standard work. Some will produce practice pieces which they wouldn't sell, but keep and use for future reference and to chart progress - the equivalent of painter's sketches. Using myself as an example, as a beginning carver, I wouldn't attempt to sell any of my work so far; it's all practice and all imperfect - at least, in my eyes. Conversely, a lot of the fabric work that I do is saleable, but I've had years of experience with that. Even so, if I'm working up something new in fabrics, I'll produce practice pieces and sketches, none of which I'd sell, before starting on the finishable article.

Freda http://fiedesigns.blogspot.com/

User avatar
chonchon
Posts: 6941
Joined: Wed May 18, 2005 9:16 am
Location: Japan

Postby chonchon » Mon Jan 17, 2011 8:41 am


There has been a long tradition with esteemed potters in Japan of smashing any less-than-perfect works, straight out of the kiln.
Piers

Size is something.

fkc
Posts: 469
Joined: Tue Jun 30, 2009 1:17 pm
Location: Glasgow, Scotland, UK
Contact:

Postby fkc » Mon Jan 17, 2011 9:07 am


Indeed. I also know artists here who will destroy their works or hide them at the backs of their studios. Pieces of my own that I don't like/am unhappy about (most of them at present) will get chucked into a box of bits and may be fished out at a later date, either to be re-fashioned, or to look at some detail which did, perhaps, still work. Some are recoverable; some are not; materials can always be recycled.
Freda http://fiedesigns.blogspot.com/

User avatar
jbjtennyo
Posts: 3733
Joined: Fri Jun 06, 2008 8:38 pm
Location: USA

Postby jbjtennyo » Mon Jan 17, 2011 12:15 pm

Interesting read for sure. All these posts just now made me think that back then, netsuke were not considered as "art". To me, then, the question would not be so much "what would an Artist do with a substandard piece, but what would the Japanese tradition or mind set be for a carving that was not up to snuff.
Would the character traits of a Japanese require him to destroy what he was not pleased with?--
just thinking out loud.

Judy

gleeson
Posts: 816
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 7:48 pm
Location: san francisco bay area

Postby gleeson » Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:35 pm

thank you to all for lending your thoughts and insights, especially fk's sharing of the psychology of the carver.

very interesting!

unfortunately, i have no views of the himotoshi of the baur piece. the only views i have are the original two scans and i enlarged one for the side-by-comparison.
cheers, robert

gleeson
Posts: 816
Joined: Thu Apr 09, 2009 7:48 pm
Location: san francisco bay area

Postby gleeson » Mon Jan 17, 2011 4:56 pm

"jbarnewoltj":2qdonapy wrote:Interesting read for sure.  All these posts just now made me think that back then, netsuke were not considered as "art".  To me, then, the question would not be so much "what would an Artist do with a substandard piece,  but what would the Japanese tradition or mind set be for a carving that was not up to snuff.   Would the character traits of a Japanese require him to destroy what he was not pleased with?-- just thinking out loud. [/quote:2qdonapy]

judy, just answering out loud with more conjecture...

in general i would think "no", i.e., he would not destroy a sub standard work. as you pointed out, it was not considered art. more likely it was a commodity to be sold for the tourist market to put food on the table, or so we've been told.

however, this netsukeshi ryukei earned the title of hokyo and taught many pupils, according to NHUR. perhaps my piece is by a student of the master.
cheers, robert

User avatar
AFNetsuke
Posts: 6301
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 12:14 am
Location: Central California coast, USA

Postby AFNetsuke » Mon Jan 17, 2011 8:48 pm

Thanks, fk. You always get me to thinking.
Also, Gleeson and Judy, there are some who prefer to denounce conjecture about netsuke/sagemono, prefering instead to only talk about that which can be proven by historical records or, in some lucky instances, other physical evidence (like the 350 yr. old inro excavated from a daimyo's gravesite written about by the Kresses). But our conjecture may lead to theories which then take us into new areas of research in hopes of finding that "proof". So in my opinion, I think conjecture is a good thing as long as we know that's what it is a lot of the time.
Alan

User avatar
Vlad
Posts: 5079
Joined: Sat Jan 03, 2009 6:59 pm
Location: Brooklyn, NY

Postby Vlad » Tue Jan 18, 2011 1:38 am

"jbarnewoltj":38fy282x wrote:Interesting read for sure. All these posts just now made me think that back then, netsuke were not considered as "art". To me, then, the question would not be so much "what would an Artist do with a substandard piece, but what would the Japanese tradition or mind set be for a carving that was not up to snuff.
Would the character traits of a Japanese require him to destroy what he was not pleased with?--
just thinking out loud.


[/quote:38fy282x]

Just continuing the thought... I think they would, or nobody would come to their shop again!

Back then, netsuke were not considered paintings and sculpture, because this is what the Japanese word was actually used for, and not only back then, but even our days. Why would someone call netsuke anything like that?
It took netsuke-shi 8 years of apprenticeship in average to become a carver of his own, and only those who eventually succeeded.

Netsuke are not considered art our days in the Western world exactly because nobody bothers to study it enough not to dump everything into one big pile, where it is accepted (for the sake of saving own investments) that the master-carvers couldn't repeat their own signatures, their own netsuke (but multiple fakers all over sudden could!?) and their own styles. There is only about maximum 10% of real authentic old Japanese netsuke out there among all of them now days. Those "10 true Tomotada oxen...", which, I am absolutely sure, are almost identical, clearly identifiable and wearing identical signatures...


"Man sieht nur, was man weiß" - "One sees only what one knows". Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)


Return to “Collectors Showcase”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 16 guests

 

 

cron