BRONZE BUDDHAWOOD BUDDHASTONE BUDDHAJAPANESE NETSUKE
    
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Antique Japanese netsuke
Okame
Cleaning Daruma's Ear
Signature: unsigned, Circa:19th Century
H 1.25 in.(3cm), W 1.75 in.(4.5cm), D 1 in.(2.5cm)
Condition: minor usage wears
Okame picking Daruma Ear
Sold To Private Collection

Daruma the great meditator and imovable master of concentration, is here undone by the comic figure of a woman--Okame, goddess of mirth who now has access to the most delicate hairs of his senses. The sage hermit winces at her touch, his composure demolished, one eye shut tightly against the invasion, the other wide with mortal peril, while he bites his finger in mortified confusion that is not without a hint of curious pleasure. Such is the skill of the artist that the scene comes alive with a playful intensity that signifies a true master.

Carved from fine, well marked tusk ivory, densely grained with rich cream to gold patina, engraving with sumi. Brilliantly accomplished with skill and subtlety in both characterization and detail, with Okame attired in embroidered robes, her flowing hair tied back, a fluttering sash falling to the bottom of the kimono that covers her feet. Tenderly she reaches up, her eyes narrowed to inspect the matter as she manipulates the pendulous earlobe of the helpless patriarch whose whisk, fan and book lie disregarded beneath them.

  
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