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Kosekiko and Choryo?

What subject or legend is depicted in your netsuke or sagemono?
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Bakurae
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Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby Bakurae » Sun Nov 12, 2017 5:53 pm

A friend recently showed me the okimono-style netsuke in the images below (a touch blurry; will try to do better). The subject seems to be Choryo rescuing Kosekiko's shoe from the river. Does anyone have a guess on the period and material? I'd guess last quarter 19th-century (Tomochika ballpark?), and perhaps walrus or other marine mammal tooth. The tiny holes seem often to occur in marine ivory, the lines on the bottom seem to meet at angles different from Shrager lines, and the use of what may be a natural hollow for the bridge is interesting. The rider is perhaps carved separately and attached. Other ideas? I'm happy to be corrected on any of the above.
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Last edited by ModTeam on Sun Nov 12, 2017 6:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Alison

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Bakurae
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby Bakurae » Sun Nov 12, 2017 5:57 pm

Looking again, both for style and condition, I'd bet older than Tomochika.

Alison

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RoyT
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby RoyT » Sun Nov 12, 2017 6:43 pm

Hi Alison,

Schreger Angles of less than 90° indicate mammoth ivory.
Regards Roy

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jbjtennyo
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby jbjtennyo » Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:47 pm

hi Alison.
That is such a sweet okimono Netsuke, and it certainly looks as though it has some age to it. The Schreger lines on the bottom sure seem to be in keeping with Mammoth, although, from the creamy composition with a couple areas of yellow translucency, I too would have guessed a type of marine ivory. I have long thought though that marine ivory was fairly void of schreger lines ( where the grain intersects) but maybe i am wrong about that. I also think it is 19C, but I would have thought early 19C based on the patina and wear, and also carving style. So nice! Do you get to add it to your collection?
Below the streaker lines of mammoth.
Attachments
mammsmal-1.jpg
Last edited by jbjtennyo on Sun Nov 12, 2017 7:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Judy

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Bakurae
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby Bakurae » Sun Nov 12, 2017 9:57 pm

Thanks, Roy and Judy. I had thought about mammoth ivory too based on the angles of the lines, but discounted it because the netsuke looked old and I have always assumed mammoth is a relatively modern material for netsuke. Am I wrong about that? I also don't know if marine ivory ever has Schreger lines.
Judy, I think my friend, who is growing increasingly interested in netsuke, is likely to hold onto it. I've encouraged him to do that. If he does continue to collect, he'll have started at a respectable level! Again thanks,

Alison

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jbjtennyo
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby jbjtennyo » Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:26 pm

Hi Alison,
Yes, I agree with you in that I also was under the assumption that the use of Mammoth was a more recent material, and therein lies the mystery for me. Perhaps there will be others weighing in on what they know. I hope so. In the mean time, it is a charming carving!
Judy

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chonchon
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby chonchon » Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:36 am

This usually quite comprehensive site (in Japanese) lists mammoth as a material for Netsuke, (see #4) but sadly it does not suggest for how long it has been used for Netsuke.
http://www5d.biglobe.ne.jp/~mystudy/kik ... tm#zaisitu

Interestingly for me, and unrelated to this particular thread, under #1 in the introduction, it says that Netsuke valued by collectors nowadays only start from the middle of the Edo Period, but they were in wide use back in the Sengoku Jidai to early Edo, as evidenced by the Matsumoto Castle museum display of Netsuke attached to old powder flasks from the early days of guns (around 1550 onwards). (3 pics attached)
I think I can pick holes in that argument, but coinciding as it does with one of my other hobbies, it makes food for thought.
Last edited by chonchon on Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
Piers

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Bakurae
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby Bakurae » Mon Nov 13, 2017 12:49 pm

Thanks, Piers, it will be interesting to see those photos.

The question of how early mammoth ivory was used for netsuke, and where, is ian nteresting one. I'll try to do some research in the old forum, the INS Journal index, and books, to see if it's discussed anywhere. Does the style of the netsuke suggest a particular carving center? That might be a clue.

I opened this thread in Subjects & Legends, but from the direction it has taken it may belong under Materials. Anyhow, maybe someone out there knows of other evidence for 19th-century use of mammoth ivory for netsuke?

Alison

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KPR
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby KPR » Mon Nov 13, 2017 2:53 pm

A Big Manju netsuke carved from Mammoth ivory. It bears the signature "YURAKU", mid-19th century.
A small start for hopefully fruitful research.
11-003.jpg
Klaus

onimh
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Re: Kosekiko and Choryo?

Postby onimh » Mon Nov 13, 2017 3:14 pm

Given that the Mammoth's predominant range had been Eastern Asia, I'd be surprised if its remains weren't found and used in the earliest netsuke, albeit rarely.


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