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Hornbill

Discussions, identification and analysis of Hornbill
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DSW90049
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Postby DSW90049 » Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:38 pm

Lub's amazing hornbill netsukes (in the Aji thread) perked my interest as to what this rare material actually is - [i:cmc2ndcu]if I may, in the interests of furthering our educational pursuits here, I will share a bit of what I have learned, per Wikipedia:[/i:cmc2ndcu]

[b:cmc2ndcu]"Hornbill ivory[/b:cmc2ndcu] (also called "golden jade") is a precious ornamental material derived from the Helmeted Hornbill ([i:cmc2ndcu]Buceros vigil[/i:cmc2ndcu]), a large bird of the Malay Peninsula, Sumatra, and Borneo.

Many hornbill species have "casques", decorative growths on the upper mandible of the bill. In most, the casque has a spongy structure, but in the Helmeted Hornbill it is solid keratin. This material, hornbill ivory, has a texture suggesting ivory but is softer. As it grows it is golden yellow, but the bird rubs its casque on its preen gland, whose oily secretion tints the surface of the casque bright red."

-- the thing which catches the eye in the hornbill netsuke which I have seen, including those which Lub has generously shared with us, is the extremely creative use by the netsuke-shi by working these red portions into the overall conception of the carving.

I remember seeing an ad in an older INS Journal (I think!) selling an entire matched set of netsuke of the 12 zodiac animals, each made of hornbill and each making clever use of the naturally red portion - [i:cmc2ndcu]wonder what ever happened to that set[/i:cmc2ndcu]?

Thanks, Lub!
"There is no shortcut to netsuke collecting; it takes time, study and patience. The market is flooded with utterly worthless rubbish. . . . "
Netsukes: Their Makers, Use and Meaning, H. Seymour Trower(1898)~~~~David

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Vlad
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Postby Vlad » Sun Sep 20, 2009 3:19 pm

I remember Lub sharing the set with us on this Forum. It was still in his possession earlier this year. I am not sure what has happened to that thread. I can't find it. Maybe Lub has removed it himself for some reason?
It was featured in the Sagemonoya add in the INSJ Vol.27, #3, pp.12-13
"Man sieht nur, was man weiß" - "One sees only what one knows". Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1832)

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LUBlub
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Postby LUBlub » Sun Oct 18, 2009 11:21 am

Dear friends and collectors VLAD & DSW90049...many tks for your appreciation of my 12 zodiac animals in HB (Honen)...this set is indeed, as quoted in several opinions of hight rank persons around the world, a unique collection, no more possible to reproduce...last year the master artist who carved it, R.Kangyoku, wrote that this set mus be considered a "National Treasure of Japan" and some day back again to Japan...I invested near 10 years to complete the project (other same set but in ivory by Kangyoku is in the Coll. of Miryam Kinsey) with love patience and passion...many times I was
phisically present in the remote areas where we find the HB raw material (Kalimantan- Borneo- Sumatra - Sarawak...) all of them in primitive villages where they possess the casque of the Rhinoplax Vigil for medical purposes or just religious faith's...indeed this Collection have my very human story inside...I knew that HH Princess of Japan and the Curators of some Japanese museums saw the photos of the set...I don't know their comments and reactions...I have in my LUB collection a total of 22 netskés in HB, including the set...two other pcs. (XVIIIth) I have sold to an important japanese collection, other 2 (contemporarays) to an Italian senior collector...I'm so happy to share with others this marvellous work of art, as Knagyoku wrote in his personal letter to me "...only one time on human being life..."

Excellence in netsuke art don't need signature or pedigree, or age, only quality, aesthetics, beauty.

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DSW90049
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Postby DSW90049 » Sun Oct 18, 2009 1:47 pm

lub41: Do you have photos you would like to share? Any more information? Absolutely fascinating and I congratulate you!
"There is no shortcut to netsuke collecting; it takes time, study and patience. The market is flooded with utterly worthless rubbish. . . . "
Netsukes: Their Makers, Use and Meaning, H. Seymour Trower(1898)~~~~David

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jbjtennyo
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Postby jbjtennyo » Sat Oct 31, 2009 5:51 pm

I too love Lub's hornbill zodiac netsuke.  I am unclear by his letter whether he still has them or not.  What an honor that Japan would like to have them as a national treasure!  They are a real treasure to whoever owns the set, and I hope they will always be kept together, and not sold off individually.  jbj
Judy

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DSW90049
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Postby DSW90049 » Sun Dec 13, 2009 4:52 pm

[b:33mtj2mp]Attention Hornbill collectors,[/b:33mtj2mp] or those who would like to be one.
Bonham's 12-15 San Francisco auction offers this netsuke:

[b:33mtj2mp]Lot No: 8008Y[/b:33mtj2mp]
An ivory netsuke of a heron
[b:33mtj2mp]By Masatoshi (Nakamura Tokisada, Tokyo, 1915-2002[/b:33mtj2mp]
Captured in a resting pose with elegant beak and head tucked into a profusion of well-articulated feathers, inlaid eyes, signed near the [i:33mtj2mp]himotoshi[/i:33mtj2mp].
[i:33mtj2mp]2 1/4in (5.7cm) long[/i:33mtj2mp]

[i:33mtj2mp]Estimate: $3,000 - 5,000
[/i:33mtj2mp]
http://www.bonhams.com/cgi-bin/public.sh/pubweb/publicSite.r?sContinent=USA&screen=LotDetails&iSaleItemNo=4469862&iSaleNo=17541&iSaleSectionNo=2&sServer=http://images2.bonhams.com/&sPath=2009-11/19/7980863-1-1.jpg

Bonham's just posted this note/comment:

[b:33mtj2mp]Lot Notice[/b:33mtj2mp]
[b:33mtj2mp]Please note that the waterfowl depicted by this Netsuke is actually a 'hornbill.'[/b:33mtj2mp]








[b:33mtj2mp][u:33mtj2mp]
[/u:33mtj2mp][/b:33mtj2mp]
[b:33mtj2mp][u:33mtj2mp]
[/u:33mtj2mp][/b:33mtj2mp]


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[img:33mtj2mp]http://images2.bonhams.com/erez4/erez?src=Images/live/2009-11/19/7980863-1-1.jpg.tif&tmp=Medium&width=180&quality=60&format=jpeg[/img:33mtj2mp]


"There is no shortcut to netsuke collecting; it takes time, study and patience. The market is flooded with utterly worthless rubbish. . . . "
Netsukes: Their Makers, Use and Meaning, H. Seymour Trower(1898)~~~~David

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AFNetsuke
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Postby AFNetsuke » Sun Dec 13, 2009 6:29 pm


DSW, I thought it was a crane and carved in elephant ivory but did not handle the piece. The lot modification stated the waterfowl depicted IS a hornbill rather than is MADE of hornbill. I can't remember any netsuke depicting hornbills and most collectors are interested in hornbills only for the material used rather than the hornbill species as a subject. I don't have one. Most hornbills have a thicker neck and most of us think of the type with the very exaggerated casque as seen in Chinese whole casque carvings that always preserve the material's reddish/orange trademark but other types have a beak much like the crane so who knows. Maybe the bottom preserves some of the red trademark of the material but more likely it would have been prominently displayed, otherwise why use hornbill at all? If I can find out more info on this piece, will let you know.
Alan

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DSW90049
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Postby DSW90049 » Sun Dec 13, 2009 7:05 pm

Hmmm . . . AF, [i:2lnm6r0b]I think you are right and I read it wrong. [/i:2lnm6r0b]Creature depicted is not a crane; creature depicted is a hornbill.

Also agree, if actually hornbill, why not prominently display the red part?

Nice netsuke imho, whether or not.

"There is no shortcut to netsuke collecting; it takes time, study and patience. The market is flooded with utterly worthless rubbish. . . . "
Netsukes: Their Makers, Use and Meaning, H. Seymour Trower(1898)~~~~David

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AFNetsuke
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Postby AFNetsuke » Sun Dec 13, 2009 7:31 pm


DSW, it is a pretty piece. Sort of a "poor man's" Kaigyokusai. Or should I be comparing "rich man's vs. wealthy man's" at the $3 to 5K estimate? There are days when I wish I collected contemporary but I've already branched out enough with my eclectic habits.
Alan

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LUBlub
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Postby LUBlub » Fri Mar 22, 2013 4:18 pm

Good hunt Klaus, not easy at all today to have pcs. of HB.
I share, probably is early XIXth.
Have CITES?
Excellence in netsuke art don't need signature or pedigree, or age, only quality, aesthetics, beauty.


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