fine netsuke depicts the 10th century Chinese immortal Liu Hai, Japanese Gama
Sennin. He is dressed in tattered clothes, right hand holding a three-legged toad,
which is crawling on the sennin's left shoulder. This netsuke is considered auspicious
and conducive to good fortune. It is one of the most popular motifs among multitudes
of netsuke designs.
is a very well carved netsuke from a quality piece of ivory. Both composition
and detail are sharply observed. This figure of Gama Sennin and Toad are unusual.
For unlike most other earlier renditions, instead of his jagged appearance, the
handsome features of the Sennin heightens the realism of this netsuke, and successfully
convey the sublime spirit of the Gama Sennin in a new light. It is indeed a unique
realization of the carver Shushin, a remarkably prolific 20th century artist whose
works continue to gain greater recognitions.