Netsuke Signature: unsigned, circa:
H 2 in.(5cm.), W 0.8 in.(1.5cm.), D 0.8 in.(1.5cm.)
Condition: usage worn, o.a. very good !
the Edo period, the only Europeans who were welcome to visit and trade in Japan
were the Dutch. Here we see the stereotypical depiction of the Dutchman, who carries
on his back the figure of the Chinese Boy, Karako. This seemingly odd pairing
is not unusual, although the significance is uncertain. However the Dutchman is
depicted with a robust good humor, his European features caricatured affectionately,
dressed in a fur coat and buttoned boots as he gives a ride to Karako, the cheerful
Chinese Boy. The work is excellently carved from a fine piece of cream to honey-colored
tusk ivory. The carving of Karako is particularly notable; viewed under some magnification,
the boy’s face is seen to be marvelously depicted. Great care has also been taken
in the carving of hands of the boy and the Dutchman. The size and style of the
netsuke is consistant with early 19th century Tokyo School carvings. A classic
netsuke with longevity and a history of use.
Sold To Private Collection