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On a blind date?

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neilholton
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby neilholton » Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:30 pm

Hi Judy,

Thank you for your kind words. Also, thanks for the feedback.

I think in the past decade, mainly due to the efforts from everyone who participates on the forum, offering a 50 year or so estimate on dating which while we are talking about it, might still be way out (particularly on early netsuke) has become acceptable. I think in the past, authorities were under such pressure to say circa-something that lots of mistakes have been made, though it was based on the thinking at the time.

I hope you are well too :x

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LUBlub
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby LUBlub » Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:41 pm

IPhone from south underdeveloped EU...

Yes... NH giving such period of time in age attribution is honest...
The most difficult thing for a doctor to do is diagnosing ... a TAC is never wrong, in netsuke probably the Carbon 14 but with many limits...in establishing the date becomes only mental exercise with the sensibility and knowledge of each but in the end as I say beauty has no time ... yesterday or Today, no matter ...
Excellence in netsuke art don't need signature or pedigree, or age, only quality, aesthetics, beauty.

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souldeep
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby souldeep » Mon Aug 14, 2017 4:44 pm

Hi Neil,

As Judy and Luigi have already said in their replies, I think the 50 year time basis is very reasonable and the way we all tend to operate via the forum as well. Earlier in the thread Reinhard mentioned he operates on this basis, and Klaus showed his appreciation to the same method. Nothing controversial here I feel :)

In answer to your other question - I'm not 100% sure what you meant by you date on the netsuke. I think I've probably misinterpreted, but if that means details in the subject, Reinhard made an earlier point that this may only suggest an earliest date, because it could have been copied at any later period.

Possibly, counter to this, we do observe fashions in the carving style. Perhaps an investigation into that might be revealing?
Piglet: "Pooh?" Pooh: "Yes, Piglet?" Piglet: "I've been thinking..." Pooh: "That's a very good habit to get into to, Piglet." - A.A. Milne.

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neilholton
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby neilholton » Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:09 am

Let me explain what I mean by dating the netsuke…


If we find a netsuke is signed by a certain artist, we tend to look in a book and if we find out that this particular artist is supposed to come from this region during this time, sometimes our heads look for things within the netsuke to conform to the book. Rather than vice versa. Its a common mistake and a mistake that I have made myself.

I think if we just ask what does the age indicators tell us about the netsuke, this will start to tell a interesting story, maybe even contrary to what books tell you.

If I can raise an example.

We know back in 1781 netsuke artists/schools are mentioned in writing for the very first time. If we find a netsuke with one of those names listed in the Soken Kisho, and it looks old it is categorised as late 18th Century. But the netsuke world seems apprehensive to acknowledge that the age indicators of these netsuke tell a story different from the one that we read in books.

If I think about one particular name…Mitsuharu. Lots of netsuke with this name look pre 1781, however some, maybe even the majority appear later. The question, is the difference in age more than a single persons carving career.

Also, the netsuke world is apprehensive when it comes to early dates. Mitsuharu is early because 18th Century is early in the eyes of most, though I believe there was a thriving netsuke industry in existence before Mitsuharu, we might not have their names but with some study we can identify their work.

One point. The subject of a netsuke is an indicator to its age. For instance, I cannot recall seeing an early netsuke of Bishamon. I have one that is a maybe, but I am not sure its Bishamon. So if you find Bishamon represented invariably you will be looking at a later netsuke.

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souldeep
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby souldeep » Tue Aug 15, 2017 12:53 pm

neilholton wrote:The question, is the difference in age more than a single persons carving career.

Good question to raise. What properties do you consider when you look at "is the difference in age more than"?

neilholton wrote: I believe there was a thriving netsuke industry in existence before Mitsuharu, we might not have their names but with some study we can identify their work.

Again - with no documentation to link the work to a known carver - what properties do you consider when you say "there was a thriving netsuke industry in existence before"?

neilholton wrote:One point. The subject of a netsuke is an indicator to its age. For instance, I cannot recall seeing an early netsuke of Bishamon. I have one that is a maybe, but I am not sure its Bishamon. So if you find Bishamon represented invariably you will be looking at a later netsuke.

Bishamon aside - understood and a scientific approach. With absence of evidence, take the lowest common denominator, and work forwards. If new evidence come to light of an earlier Bishamon, then you reconsider the dates. As with the previous two questions - what properties would make you reconsider a Bishamon as earlier?
Piglet: "Pooh?" Pooh: "Yes, Piglet?" Piglet: "I've been thinking..." Pooh: "That's a very good habit to get into to, Piglet." - A.A. Milne.

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neilholton
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby neilholton » Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:02 pm

I thought you might question me on a few of these points Martyn. This is another great aspect of the netsuke world today rather than yesteryear.....enthusiasts ask questions :D

Leave it with me...I'll need a few hours :idea:

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AFNetsuke
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby AFNetsuke » Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:27 pm

Regarding the use of the terms first or second half of a century, there may be a number of carvers we know enough about to use quarter century dating and in some cases it may be preferable to say something like "active 1860 to 1890".
Last edited by AFNetsuke on Tue Aug 15, 2017 3:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Alan

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souldeep
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby souldeep » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:10 pm

AFNetsuke wrote:Regarding the use of the terms first or second half of a century, there may be a number of carvers we know enough about to use quarter century dating and in some cases it may be preferable to say something like "active 1860 to 1890".

And doesn't that just bring us back to Circa?

I opened the topic defending Circa dates on that kind of basis;

souldeep wrote:There are examples I've seen where dealers such as Max or Rosey provide a Circa date on the piece they are writing on, but I understand that is because they know who carved the work, and the dates of the carvers life, so guesstimate where a netsuke fits into that period of the carvers development.
Piglet: "Pooh?" Pooh: "Yes, Piglet?" Piglet: "I've been thinking..." Pooh: "That's a very good habit to get into to, Piglet." - A.A. Milne.

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neilholton
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby neilholton » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:13 pm

souldeep wrote:
neilholton wrote:The question, is the difference in age more than a single persons carving career.


Good question to raise. What properties do you consider when you look at "is the difference in age more than"?

Ok, on the first point I will offer these two comparisons.

We have two rats. I think today/yesteryear they might have been described as late 18th Century or certainly of similar age. I think I would suggest that perhaps the same school made them but they display a significant difference in age, enough to suggest a generation of difference.

Let us say for argument sake, the unsigned version is 18th Century. How old does that make the signed?

The same for these two goats signed Mitsuharu. Signature aside, they display similar traits. The seated example has been sold through a major London auction house in the past as Late 18th Century. I think that there is enough age difference to suggest a generation of difference.

I would be interested to hear others thoughts…

I agree Alan there is definitely a place for Circa dating.
Attachments
MitsiharuGoat3.JPG
Mitsuharu 002.jpg
Mitsuharu 003.jpg
Mitsuharu 004.jpg
MitsuharuGoat1.JPG
MitsuharuGoat2.JPG
SmoothRat1.JPG
SmoothRat2.JPG
SmoothRat3.JPG

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neilholton
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Re: On a blind date?

Postby neilholton » Tue Aug 15, 2017 4:14 pm

Sorry I forgot these
Attachments
SmoothRat4.JPG
SmoothRat5.JPG
SmoothRat6.JPG


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