Carved Wood Okimono
Japan. Circa: 20th century
H 11 in.(28cm), W 7 in.(17.5cm), D 5 in.(12.5cm)
not including wood base
Condition: Very Good!
the God of Agriculture, known as First Deity of the Five Grains, the mythical
sage king of prehistoric China. He is venerated as the original master who taught
the ancient Chinese the practice of agriculture and herbal medicine. As shown
here in this rare Japanese carving, the horned Shennong is realized with exemplary
lucidity. The deity is seated in royal ease position, wearing a shoulder-length
cape made of leaves, with one hand holding a green herb to his mouth for tasting,
two large bulging eyes signifying his corpulent presence and expense of powers.
The carving is congenially set striking contrast into lightly stained fruitwood,
with billowing grains flowing beneath the figure effectively unified the composition.
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