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Antique Japanese Whale Tooth Okimono
Magician
Performing with Two Rabbits
Signed: Hiroyuki, 19th Century
H 5.75in.(14.5cm.), W 2.5in.(6cm.), D 1.5in.(4cm.)
Minor pigment loss, very good condition!

An elegantly carved whale tooth statue, a superb specimen of late Edo era. Signed on the base in a oval reserve, the scripted signature is identified as Hiroyuki, a prolific early to mid 19th century carver whose name is more frequently seen on netsuke. This large whale tooth carving affords us a glimpse of Hiroyuki's admirable original talent. The humorously conceptualized character who appears to be a magician. He is wearing a funny high hat, an incised scrimshaw robe, seated with body turn to his right, cheerfully smiling as he presents a rabbit in the basket, and another is leaning by his feet. The okimono is realized in naturalism. The artist's ingenuity with the use of simplified curves avoided overworking on the dense material. With the magician formed in round, which effectively creating an integrated harmony that can be admired from any angle. The whale tooth ivory is beautifully aged with a patina varying from a rich cream to light-gold. It appears to be mostly solid because of the nine ounces net weight. There is no damages besides some paint loss near the base area.

Estimated value: $500-700
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text/call: 510-918-2333

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