A Yixing pottery teapot imitating a section of knotted tree with branches forming the spout, handle and cover finial. Prunus blossoms issuing within the relief decoration. Marked within the cover. 20th century. We are comfortable estimating the current example to be at least mid-century. Good condition. Length from handle to spout, about 6 1/2 inches (16.5 cm). Height to tallest point, about 2 1/2 (6.35 cm)
A Chinese paktong opium smoking suite. The cloisonne decorated base holding cylindrical covered box marked with single character on foot and profusely under hinged lid, two tools in holders, and two part pipe marked with single character on foot (threaded bowl missing.) Condition is good with small enamel losses to the cloisonne decoration (an acceptable method of conservation is hard, colored foundry or casting wax.) Height from bottom of base to top of pipe stem is about 10 1/4 inches (26 cm). Late Qing dynasty.
A pair of famille verte palette biscuit porcelain Foo lions. Green, aubergine, yellow and black line enamel decoration of the lions on plinths with butterflies and flowers motif. The slightly taller one with ball and in good condition with only minor color touch up on one eye. The slightly smaller one with young and with one section of broken head restuck sloppily with glue otherwise presents well on a shelf though teeth separated (could be cleaned up easily enough though we don't mess with pieces.) Interchangeably referred to as "lions" or "dogs", they probably derive their inspiration from the Chinese Chow Chow (perhaps the oldest recognizable domestic dog breed.) In some studies, such inspiration can be imagined while in others (such as Kangxi style biscuit figures) the "lions" are more stylized. This subject, along with the palette, is generally thought to be Kangxi and is typically attributed (if not wishfully) to that period. Surviving examples from the Kangxi period of the famille verte palette on biscuit, however, are considered to be few. Most of what we encounter on the market is surely from the Qing dynasty and most from the 19th century which is where we date these - late 19th century. Assuming a value of $495 for the one in good condition and $195 for the one with restuck section of head, we therefore offer this pair at $690. Height (taller), 9 7/8 inches (25.1 cm)
A Han dynasty bronze hu vase. Raised on high, cupped foot. The body cast with three grooves bands around the circumference and below the girth. Another three grooved bands (one smaller) above the girth. Two mask handles with loose rings (original to the vase) on opposing sides of the shoulder. One larger grooved band under the rim. Condition sound with the vessel of solid casting, no active rust and good patina. Some old losses along the foot rim and holes under the girth on one side possibly from an impact or once active rust. The bottom once drilled for a lamp and now plugged (see illustration of inside bottom.) A good metalworker could easily patch the holes and losses for aesthetic display (whether with patinated bronze or with another material such as gold so as not to hide the conservation. Height, about 13 3/8 inches (about 34 cm). For examples of the same form, patina and grooved bands, see Christies 2009 sale 5812 lot 144 and Sothebys 2011 sale 8722 lot 310. Weight may be a factor to ship this item. When placing this vase on our scale it errors out at over 5 kg or 11 lb.
Antique Chinese carved dark red cinnabar covered box. The cover, with slightly convex top, intricately carved with four figures (two standing and two seated) in garden landscape with architectural structures and tall hills in the background. The carved flower motif on the sides of the cover also appearing on the sides of the bottom. The underside of the bottom with a repeating, star pattern centering a rectangular reserve now missing a cartouche. The bottom and cover with metal rims. Late Qing to Early Republic. Condition is good with minor wear (see illustrations) restricted to the rims and corners - most notable on the corners of the underside and a bumped corner of the cover. One of our detailed illustrations shows cross sections of the carved layers of lacquer. Length, 5 1/16 inches (12.85 cm). Width, 3 1/2 inches (8.89 cm). Height, 2 1/16 inches (5.24 cm).
A set of six unusual Buddhist bronze figures, each seated upon a lotus base and generally forming a pear shape. The mustached and bearded figures with plumed head wear and flowing robes each holding a musical instrument - one reading a sutra. It appears the figures were all from the same mould while the arms and attributes were done separately and joined to the figures. The latter figure (particularly) exhibiting wear to the apparently gilt surface, revealing the bronze alloy on the rubbed stomach and sides. The underside of each bronze closed by a recessed copper plate with embossed decoration. Hasty research finds that Indonesia has along history of three dimensional mandalas of which the 9th century temple at Borobodur provides the grandest example. Small Indonesian bronze mandala figures are known to date to as early as the 10th century. The tradition has persisted or repeated into the turn of the 20th century. These figures, clearly with Asian characteristics but with South Asian qualities including longer hair and full mustaches and beards below the chin, may represent later Islamic influence (though depiction of a human form and especially an idol would be prohibited within strict interpretation of Islam.) A melding of different religious experience and culture can be observed. We have seen only a couple similar figures described as late 19th century or early 20th century and only one other set. About turn of the century, we opt for a conservative dating of "pre 1920". We arrive at a price of $900 from an average of about $150 per figure but sold as a set. Good condition though showing imperfections of somewhat provincial castings and metalwork. Each height about 4 3/4 inches (12 cm) to top of plume.
This green glazed, or celadon, jar is after the Longquan tradition but probably Thai, Sawankhalok production (the glaze just a bit translucent for Longquan and the foot perhaps stouter.) Buff colored body where not glazed on the foot. The ring handles flanking the rim have at some point been restored. The glaze with crazing and some scratching - mostly on the shoulder and the girth of the jar. Otherwise in good condition. About 6 inches diameter (15.24 cm). The height is about 5 1/4 inches (13.35 cm)
A larger Sawankhalok Covered Jar. Underglaze decoration of panels with foliate decoration on the jar, scrolling vine with blossoms on the cover with knop finial. The glaze weathered and crazed. One small old line on the unglazed rim of the jar - concealed when the cover is in place. Otherwise good condition.
Shigenobu (Hiroshige II) 1826-1869. The oban tate-e triptych depicts Minamoto no Yorimitsu, Sakata no Kintoki and Watanabe no Tsuna entering the mountain home of the demons. Circa 1851-1853.
Shigenobu was a pupil of Ando Hiroshige and adopted his name to become the second generation after his master's passing in 1858. Condition of these prints are faded, wrinkles - some creased, margins trimmed and uneven, light wormage and pin holes, light foxing and soil. As challenged as the condition sounds, this dramatic and colorful triptych would frame and present nicely on a decorative basis and as a conversation piece. These prints may best ship (at buyer's expense) detached from the current backing and matting to reduce package size.
An attractive Ao-Kutani palette baluster vase. In the Yoshidaya style invoking the a Ko-Kutani variety utilizing dark and light blue, green, aubergine and yellow enamel decoration drawn in black enamel line. Portraying a landscape with a range of features including mountains, a sea, rockery, pines, architectural structures and figures. The base and shoulder with geometric patterns - roundels with auspicious symbols on the shoulder. Kutani mark on the foot. Late 19th to early 20th century. Very good condition with only light rubbing of the finely crazed enamel surface. Height about 8 1/2 inches (21.6 cm).
The Hirado figure of a monkey with moveable head and tonge. Portrayed as a Shinto priest with the addition of a fan used in performing the Manzai dance during New Year's festivities. Blue underglaze and iron oxide wash on the biscuit and over the glaze. Meiji period. Good condition. Height, 3 5/8 inches (9.21 cm)
A Korean celadon duck form water dropper. The olive green glaze with a fine, regular craze. The unglazed, flat foot oxidized to an even, warm brown tone. We believe it to be 20th century though impossible to be more specific. The foot suggests it was not fired with an oxygen reduction kiln as seen with similar, later copies of this famous Koryo design. Perfect condition. From bill to tail, 5 1/2 inches long (13.97 cm).
A small Korean celadon bowl on raised foot. The rim flattened and very slightly everted The glaze pooling to olive tones over the celadon body. Some small points of iron oxidation in the glaze. Attractive, small light blue speckling and veining inside the stout, raised foot. Some kiln grit adhering, mostly inside the foot rim. With the small exception of chip a along the foot rim, the bowl is in very good condition. Joseon dynasty. Diameter at widest span, about 4 5/8 inches (11.74 cm). Height about 3 inches (7.62 cm)
A Korean celadon bowl. Simple, deep form with slightly everted rim and no decoration. Close inspection of the surface reveals under the translucent glaze wipe marks from the application of a thin, drab slip unevenly over the celadon body. The glaze with some areas of calcification. The short foot with some areas of exposed body oxidized to a buff-iron color. Kiln grit adhering to the foot. Light scratching mostly in the bottom of the bowl otherwise very good condition. Joseon dynasty. Diameter at widest span, 5 3/8 inches (13.65 cm). Height at hightest point, 3 3/8 inches (8.57 cm)
A fine little Hirado figural group depicting two karako playing with a Shishi-mai (lion dance) mask. Sharply modeled with incised details and sparse blue, aubergine and black underglaze decoration. The karako's eyes, the lion mask and the underside unglazed. The biscuit surface of the lion mask intentionally oxidized to an even, light buff tone. Good condition with only a few tiny "flea bite" surface flakes one must look closely for and not detracting (our close images depict them larger than life with commentary in the captions.) Length, 3 1/8 inches (7.94 cm). Height, 2 1/2 inches (6.35 cm)
A large Ao-Kutani palette porcelain plaque in the Yoshidaya manner. Two geese in garden landscape with palm tree, lotus among rockery and water in finely applied blue, green, aubergine, black and yellow enamels. A black key border with green overglaze enamel around the canted rim. The back not glazed except for a black enamel square Kutani kiln mark with overglaze green enamel and two character black enamel artist mark with overglaze green enamel in oval. Two points of the back recessed and pierced before firing to provide for suspension display of the plaque. The so called Yoshidaya type of 19th century Ao-Kutani wares is named for a merchant who revived production of a particular palette of Ko-Kutani production (of the 17th and early 18th century) adjacent to the original kilns. The current example certainly appears to be 19th century. Later 19th century Ao-Kutani palette production is often ambitiously ascribed to the Yoshidaya kiln which, in fact, operated only briefly from the 1820s to the early 1830s. We recently purchased this as Yoshidaya style Ao-Kutani appeals to us personally (as one might tell from our recently listed auction lots.) We offer it here while we are auctioning other Ao-Kutani wares. It came to us framed and we retain the frame (illustrated) to ship with the plaque. Light enamel loss in the scene not distracting from its appeal. More enamel loss evident along the rim which would be covered with the frame in place. Sparse and light small scratches and rubbing. Otherwise, good and presentable condition. Plaque dimensions (not including the frame) about 13 1/4 inches by about 12 inches (33.65 cm x 30.48 cm). Weight without frame 7.03 lbs (3.19 kg)
A large Ko-Kutani style porcelain, charger sized, deep dish or shallow bowl. In the Ao-Kutani palette but with addition of red enamel to the array of blue, green, aubergine, yellow, black and chocolate brown enamel. The interior with bird perched on a peony stem, the cavetto with band of repeating diamond pattern. The back glazed green over black karakusa. The bottom yellow with black mark under a square green glazed reserve. Probably early 20th century, this quality of production can routinely be found described as 19th century. Good condition with some crazing in the glaze. Diameter, 14 15/16 inches (37.9 cm). Weight, 5.41 lb (2.453 kg)
A small Ao-Kutani palette porcelain duck form kogo (incense box) in the Yoshidaya manner. Decoration in polychrome enamels including light blue, green, yellow, aubergine and dark brown (nearly black.) Kutani mark in black under yellow enamel on the inside of the lower half of the kogo. The bottom also appears to have an indiscernible mark, perhaps a mark not glazed over before firing. The inside of the top and bottom glazed but the joining rims of each unglazed biscuit. The bottom, also unglazed, burnt to a buff tone in the kiln (areas of yellow glaze along the foot oxidized to a chocolate color where meeting the biscuit foot. The so called Yoshidaya type of 19th century Ao-Kutani wares is named for a merchant who revived production of a particular palette of Ko-Kutani production (of the 17th and early 18th century) adjacent to the original kilns. The current example may be 19th century - at least circa turn of the century. Ao-Kutani palette production from the later 19th century is often ambitiously ascribed to the Yoshidaya kiln which, in fact, operated only briefly from the 1820s to the early 1830s. Small flakes and chips along the outside of the rim on both top and bottom - one along the rim of the bottom half filled with a resin. Other than the forgoing honest wear from use, in good condition with no cracks or lines other than crazing - happy to have old surviving top and bottom from the same kiln (what are the odds?) A charming little piece just acquired up the day we listed it (and in time to join other Ao-Kutani.) Length, about 3 1/16 inches (7.78 cm)
An Ao-Kutani palette porcelain deep dish in the Yoshidaya manner. Hydrangeas decoration in polychrome enamels including white, light blue-green, and dark green, blue, blue-green and aubergine in black line, all on yellow ground, a chocolate brown enamel on the otherwise unglazed biscuit rim. The number and subtlety of hues but consistent for palette is pleasing. The back with enamels including dark green on black line decoration of clouds. Kutani mark in black under yellow glaze inside the foot ring which appears to have been glazed but with the enamel rubbed along high points to the porcelain body. A couple of kiln kisses to the cloud decoration area on the back. The so called Yoshidaya type of 19th century Ao-Kutani wares is named for a merchant who revived production of a particular palette of Ko-Kutani production (of the 17th and early 18th century) adjacent to the original kilns. The current example certainly appears to be 19th century and could possibly be from the Yoshidaya kiln. Later Ao-Kutani palette production is often ambitiously ascribed to the Yoshidaya kiln which, in fact, operated only briefly from the 1820s to the early 1830s. One 3/16 inch flake (mostly to the enamel) under the rim. Otherwise good condition considering expected scratching and rubbing of the enamel. Presents well. Diameter, 11 7/8 inches (30.16 cm)
An unusual, sancai glazed stoneware caparisoned elephant form vessel. The larger opening on its back is suggestive of a lime pot (our best guess) with only traces suggested by an off white cast on the sides of the otherwise buff colored unglazed interior. The trunk, curled above the head, ends in a smaller aperture but not optimal as a kendi. The form, in the round, and the pleasantly crazed sancai glaze (cream, amber and a rare blue) suggest influence of the Cizao kilns legacy of Fujian (known to produce sancai vessels and utilitarian objects including pillows.) But we are ascribing a much later origin than a Fujian sancai vessel would demand (perhaps as late as the Qing dynasty) because the glaze is more vitreous than the lead based Fujian glazes, the body harder than the lower fired pottery, and the form suggesting a later Southeast Asian demand for ceramics in an earlier manner (where much Cizao production had been destined.) The buff colored body unglazed on the bottom and with a single character, 'Da' (大, great), in double incised lines. Vitreous smooth residue from the kiln resembling burnt caramel adhering to the feet. Good condition. Length tail to trunk, about 6 3/4 inches (17.15 cm). Height to tip of trunk, about 3 7/8 inches (9.84 cm).
A kozuka with gilt and silvered bronze decoration of a general's baton and banner on dark patinated bronze nanako ('fish roe' textured ground.) The utility knife handle with shakudo (a pickled gold and copper alloy) back and sides. Surfaces showing wear and slight distress from use but in fairly good and serviceable condition. Could benefit from a light cleaning and oiling. Length, little more than 3 3/4 inches (9.53 cm)
A 'Swatow' type Zhangzhou porcelain jar in transitional style but probably later (glaze ending at the foot rather than above it, the interior also glazed.) Shi or Foo lions and peonies decoration in green, red and yellow overglaze enamels and blue underglaze double rings around the rim and on the shoulder, single ring above the foot. Line details (difficult to make out under the nearly opaque overglaze enamels but there) are probably black. The glaze evenly crazed for a crackle effect. The foot and approximately 1 1/4" inches above the foot apparently stained black but possibly from the kiln (noting that areas near the foot where the unctuous crackle glaze has crawled from the body also has a thin black glaze clearly imparted in the kiln.) An approximately 1 inch hairline issues from the rim. Height, about 4 1/4 inches (10.8 cm). Acquired at an antiques show at the Raleigh NC fairgrounds during summer travel last year.
Thai bronze head of a Bodhisattva. Ayutthaya period. Presentable decorative condition with tips of earlobes missing, core exposed atop head, and the body missing of course. Black lacquer and traces of gilt on the diadem and the back of the neck. Height of the head , about 3 3/4 inches (9.54 cm) not including the pin for securing on plinth. Total height including the plinth, 5 7/8 inches (14.9 cm). The patina appears a bit darker and warmer in person but did not cooperate, photographically, with our lighting.
A good pair of dragon menuki in nicely detailed patinated shakudo alloy and with gilt features. Late Edo period. Good condition but with glue adhering mostly to the back. Each little more than 1 5/8 inches (4.13 cm) long.
Korean brown glazed water dropper of compressed sphere, or disk form with knob finial and side spout. Undulating incised decoration on the shoulders and knob finial grip, rings around the circumference, and lines perpendicular to the foot appearing darker, almost black from the pooling of the glaze and with light caramel tone on the inverse high points. Typical coarse kiln grit adhering to the foot. This particular form of Korean brown glazed ceramic is scarce relative to other forms. We were able to find one other example sold at Christies in 2001, sale 9606 lot 304 (when the market for Korean art was still recovering.) Good condition save some scratching and rubbing of the glaze on high points acquiring a dry appearance in contrast to the attractively "alligatored", almost slightly iridescent glaze surface. There are a couple "kiln kisses" on the sides, the spout appears to be entirely intact despite a somewhat coarse appearance, a small line on the foot may be a firing fault or from a later impact but is entirely stable. The strongly potted water dropper weighs 10.4 oz (293 grams). Diameter, about 3 3/4 inches (9.5 cm). Height, about 3 inches (7.6 cm)
An iron tsuba (Japanese sword guard.) Karakusa (vine) forming eight openwork lobes issuing from four Anzu (apricot blossoms). Incised details (worn.) The Anzu was used in Mon for a number of families, some of which included the Nabeshima and the Tachibana. The mon featured prominently in the Muromachi and Azuchi-Momoyama periods (16th and early 17th centuries.) The configuration of this tsuba is similar to the complex mon of Ono Harunaga which arranged eight pairs of Anzu blossoms around a larger, central pair of blossoms. Ono Harunaga was a general under the Toyotomi's, was lord of Osaka castle after the battle of Sekigahara, and met his end there in 1615 after the siege by Tokugawa Ieyasu. Holes for utility knives flanking the seppa-dai. Good condition. Rubbing of the seppa-dai normal but also with light pitting (acceptable) on the reverse seppa-dai. Small quantities of glue adhering (picked off reasonably easily but with some effort - not at all disturbing the patina.) Decent tone when tapped. 2 5/8 inches (6.7 cm) diameter.
A kozuka with sea shell and seaweed decoration with gold and silver overlaid on shakudo (a pickled gold and copper alloy) nanako ('fish roe' textured ground.) The utility knife handle with filed gilt bronze sides and back. Slight bend and the nanako somewhat dented in places. Would present nicely enough with a sword fitted to hold a kozuka in the saya (scabbard.) Kogatana (utility blade) not included. Length, 3 3/4 inches.
Japanese polychrome enamel Arita porcelain dish. Decoration in blue underglaze and green, red, black, buff, aubergine and gold enamel of cranes among the three friends of winter (pine, bamboo and prunus) and Spring flowers. Stylized character in center, karakusa on verso. Good condition. 8 5/8 inches diameter
Chinese bronze shi (or foo) lion seal. Four character seal mark. Good condition. Height, little more than 1 1/2 inches (3.8 cm)
A good Korean mother of pearl inlaid small chest of drawers. The front with inlaid decoration of pairs of birds (including, recognizably, ducks and phoenix) among lotus, bamboo, peaches and peonies on flat black lacquered ground. This is one of those wonderful finds of both honest age and undisturbed condition. All the wood with evidence only of being hand worked and appearing untouched since made with good, honest patina on all the secondary woods as well. The extent of conservation over time appears to be a couple of patched corners to the inlaid drawer facings and sparse replacement of some missing wooden pins (yes good, old wooden pins throughout) with a nail here and there. As one with experience dealing in period furniture, I would have to say that this is not only in good condition but also thankful that it has not been altered. As obvious from the unlevel shelves seen in our pictures, it is in need of a proper (hide) regluing. So it will ship with the drawers and dividers a bit loose. Height, 10 5/8 inches (26.9 cm), Width, about the same (27 cm), Depth, 10 1/8 inches (25.7 cm)
An unusual (you could probably say rare) paktong betel nut set. Comprised of six pieces of Chinese paktong including an octagonal tray, four elongated six sided hinged boxes together fitting within the octagonal tray and centering a square space in which fits a single octagonal hinged box containing lime residue (the square space accommodating the hinges from all five boxes.) Paktong being an alloy of brass, nickel and tin to imitate silver with resistance to tarnish, the surface of paktong can hold a high burnish but does acquire patina over time. This set exhibits a dull patina from rubbing and exposure of the top surfaces while retaining the burnished luster on the sides of the boxes and trays. Condition is good with minor discoloration of the rubbed top surfaces. The hinges lack retaining pins which may have been wood (in which case simply enough replaced.) As these appear to have been brushed (possibly for affect when made), they may clean but the top surfaces might not again acquire the burnished quality of the side surfaces unless again burnished (we do not disturb metal surfaces.) Tray, point to point 9 3/8 inches (23.8 cm), side to side 8 5/8 inches (22 cm). Box length, 4 3/4 inches (12.07 cm). Central box dimension 2 1/2 inches (6.35 cm)
A Philippined betel nut box. Silver inlaid decoration on bronze. Rectangular form with canted corners and conforming hinged cover over three comparments (two small side compartments, one with old lime residue, flanking one large central compartment also with hinged covers. All hinges held by wood pinning. Good condition. Length, not including the bale handles on each side, 6 7/8 inches (17.46 cm)
A Korean blue and white porcelain water dropper. Cube form with bracket feet on the four corners, a spout along the top edge on one side, and a whole (for displacement) near center top. Painterly floral decoration within line border on the sides. Geometric flower head decoration on the top. Stable cracks, a couple surface chips, and loss to the spout. All dimensions about 2 1/4 inches (5.715 cm) except for the height which is about 2 1/8 inches (5.39 cm). Joseon dynasty.
Woodblock print of Nikko Kegon-no-taki (Kegon falls in Nikko) by Kawase Hasui from the series ukiyo-e monyo shu (Collection of ukiyo-e designs). The water depicted in the falls is textured. signed Hasui, sealed Kawase, publisher's mark Bijutsusha ("Rumi") and titled in the right margin. Image area, height about 14 5/16 inches (36.35 cm) by width about 9 3/8 inches (23.81 cm). Including margins, height about 15 3/8 inches (39.1 cm) by width about 10 2/8 inches (26.04 cm) near the top to 10 3/8 inches (26.35 cm) toward the bottom. Not being a print expert, I would describe the condition as good but with toning to areas of the print that seem to follow white areas and certain colors such as the margins, the falls, and darker areas of the terrain behind the falls. This can be observed particularly from our illustration of the back. Hinged by tape to the matte (dry and losing adhesive quality.) This was acquired by us early in 2014 from a Washington DC area consignment shop.
Korean, Joseon dynasty blue and white porcelain bottle with celadon tinged pooling in the otherwise clear glaze. Three friends of winter decoration with bamboo decoration on one side and on the shoulder, rockery with Spring blooms and (presumably) pine scrub on the other side (pine, bamboo and prunus being the "three friends".) Double incised lines border the top and bottom of the cylindrical girth. Compare with the bottle in the same form and proportion in Masterpieces of the Ho-Am Art Museum, 1982, object 78 (page 99). Both bottles have a waisted neck, rounded shoulder, a raised foot with smaller radius than the vessel, and only about a centimeter difference in height. [The Ho-Am bottle is also illustrated in The Ceramic Art of Korea, 1961, object 88(page 196) when it was in the Jai-hyung Sohn collection. Kim and Gompertz describe the form as "an unusual shape".] Condition is good with the acceptaible kiln and firing faults common to Korean ceramics, slight list to the shoulder and neck, a bit primitive (certainly more primitive than the Ho-Am example which is only mentioned as an example of this bottle type.) Height to rim about 6 1/4 inches (15.875 cm). Weight 1.71 lbs (776 grams).
Chinese scroll painting depicting figures in boats in mountainous landscape with bridge and retreats. A note attached by old paperclip (the note very dry and brittle with age) indicates "Chien Chien-chiu, member of the legislative Yuan and chief, Women's Activities Section, KMT". A search on the name paired with Kuomintang finds that Chien Chien-chiu was a member of the Central Committee of the KMT at least between 1969 and 1973 when nominated with eight others by Chiang Kai-shek to the presidium for its Fourth Plenary Session. This is interesting whether Chien Chien-chiu is the artist or presented the painting as it illustrates the tradition of literati interest and scholarship among statespeople in Chinese culture. The painting is in good, clean condition with wrinkles/folds in the mounting not intruding terribly into the paper of the painting (will remount nicely.) The scroll ends are buffalo horn. Painting height 27 1/8 inches (68.9 cm), width 11 5/18 inches (28.65 cm). Mounting height about 53 1/4 inches (135.3 cm), width 14 1/2 inches (36.83 cm)
A good, large murashido patinated bronze vase. Raised geese and irises decoration including some katakiribori details. The bottom may have been reversed when reattaching it at some later time. From inside the vase can be seen on the bottom a 16 petal chrysanthemum overlaid by Kashiwa (oak leaf) mon and on a bed of same - all in relief. We illustrate the interior bottom in one of our enlargement views (pardon the uncleaned state.) Reasonably good condition with light rubbing and minor, acceptable distress t the surface. In the hands of an experienced metalworker a light cleaning and some care should do wonders for this object. Just over 12 1/2 inches (32 cm)
A good, signed Satsuma dish with fine decoration. Center with key border and fan panels decorated respectively with court ladies, court nobles, Samurai, courtesans, tea ceremony objects, butterflies and landscape. The decoration encompasses the formal and the pleasure aspects of the elite classes. A polychrome floral ground and gilt floral rim border round out the rich decoration. Signed rather simply on the base. With this good quality of decoration, one could reasonably assume the artist may have at times worked in one of the more important Satsuma ateliers. Very good condition with no issues. Diameter, 6 1/4 inches (15.875 cm). Weight 11.1 oz (315 g).
An Annamese blue and white porcelain dish. Flower decoration in cavetto centered by leaves and flowers decorated bands within unglazed rim. Leaf lappet decoration above the ring foot centering unglazed bottom with typical iron wash. 15th to 16th century. Good condition, crawling original to the firing, crazing to glaze, good resonance when tapped, no hairlines and no cracks. Diameter, 9 1/2 to 9 5/8 inches (about 24.3 cm). Height, little more than 2 1/4 inches (about 5.75 cm). Acquired through a third party, along with some of the other ceramic lots we have recently listed, from the estate of a retired government employee who worked and traveled extensively throughout Asia in the 20th century.
A Thai market Chinese porcelain bowl. Turquoise, iron red, white, yellow, blue, green, black and magenta enamel decoration. Known as Benjarong, this class of porcelain made and decorated for the Thai taste of the period is so unique to that market that it is often thought of as a Thai ceramic. Metal covered rim and foot. The present example has wear and minor loss to the enamel in the bowl and a hairline crack from the rim (illustrated.) Condition issues are not uncommon with 19th century Southeast Asian market Chinese porcelain which also helps to explain the popularity of metal rims on these (perhaps more vigorously used) ceramics. The bowl in otherwise good condition with body and glaze crawling inside the foot from the firing. Bowl diameter a little more than 7 inches (17.8 cm), Height 3 5/8 inches (9.21 cm)
A pair of Chinese blue and white porcelain cups. Nicely painted decoration of three flower arrangements on each cup - the bouquets respectively centering a peony, a chrysanthemum and a camellia bloom (appearing to represent blooms from different seasons.) The cobalt blue has a deep, clean quality. Late 19th to early 20th century. Condition is good - one cup with small flake inside the foot rim (illustrated.) Height each, little more than 2 1/4 inches (5.72 cm). Diameter each, about 3 1/4 inches (8.25 cm) - one slightly under.
19th century Chinese covered blue and white porcelain bowl or jar. Probably Vietnam market (the painterly decoration and the form are consistent with this.) Decoration of scholarly figures in garden landscape. Condition relatively good. In detail, a minor, small intact fracture to the foot rim, a few very minor "fleabite" flakes inside the rim, a small glaze frit on the cover, an old scratched in character on the cover. Height (together) about 4 3/4 inches (12.1 cm)
A tropical hardwood walking stick. Probably handiwork from the Philippines. Carved floral decoration and the name Paul V. McNutt who was an American politician and historical figure. He was the 34th governor of Indiana during the Great Depression, High Commissioner of the Philippines Territory, Administrator of the Federal Security Agency, Chairman of the War Manpower Commission, Ambassador to the newly independent Philippines, Chairman of the Philippine-American Trade Council, directory of several firms in Manila, and aspired to run for President of the United States. He was in the Philippines from 1937 to 1939 and again from 1945 to 1947. Owing in part to his exposure to Japan during the war years in the Philippines, he held very controversial views toward the Japan and the Japanese people (fortunately Roosevelt's announcement seeking a second term kept McNutt, the front runner until then, out of the White House as he would have been far more aggressive than was Truman in ending the war.) Missing caps on both ends otherwise the carved wood in good condition. Length, 30 7/8 inches (78.43 cm)
An elegant, long South Pacific carved hardwood lime spatula. Probably Massim Archipelago off Papua New Guinea. Some openwork in the carved decoration. An unusual five inch long notch on the decorated end (possibly for use with a feather or palm frond?) Good condition with minor wear from use and handlng. Length, 27 inches (68.58 cm)
Pair Bleu de Hue porcelain bowls. Late 19th century Chinese kiln production (most from Jingdezhen) for the Vietnamese market. Blue and white decoration of ducks in water among lotus. If you look at the photographs closely, you will barely discern a very soft, pale blue wash for the water in the decoration. Four character hall mark on each piece (each illustrated here.) Metal rims, popular among late 19th century Bleu de Hue wares, have kept the porcelain rims well protected and so these are in excellent condition with no issues. Bowl diameters approximately 5 1/16 inches (12.9 cm). Cover diameters approximately 4 11/16 inches (11.9 cm). Acquired through a third party from the estate of a retired government employee who worked and travelled extensively throughout Asia in the 20th century.
A rare, antique Chinese Imperial court necklace presentation case. Gilt, red lacquered formed and stitched thin wood armature with carved or pressed fret pattern on sides and top also with auspicious symbols and characters conveying congratulations upon promotion. Diameter, about 7 5/8 inches (19.37 cm). Height, about 2 1/2 inches (6.35 cm). Very good condition with tasteful and old conservation to small areas of lacquer and expected rubbing to gilt surface. Retaining the original hinge and latch hardware (a thin bronze-like alloy). Also retaining a shaped, seal stamped label on the interior (where it was well protected) which may date to when the case was made. We are conservatively estimating the case to be late Qing to early Republican. A similar case but with archaic characters was sold by Aspire Auctions, February 6, 2014, lot 306
A Solomon Islands carved wood crescent shaped Samoan club. Appears (from our familiarity with Chinese furniture) to be ironwood. The incised decoration is partially filled with remaining encrustation. Good condition with minor surface wear (judging from which, a good patina has accumulated on this quite hard wood.) The flattened end of the grip, however, might possibly have at some point extended a bit longer (though there is patina to that surface as well.) Length, 25 1/8 inches (63.8 cm)
Japanese fish form covered serving dish. Red and black lacquer on wood. Third quarter 20th century or earlier. Good condition. Length, 15 3/4 inches between farthest points.
A Bizen type kogo in form of a primitively rendered reclining sage or monk. Signed on bottom. 20th century. Good condition. Length: 5 inches (12.7 cm)
A very unusual modern Japanese pottery vase. Exaggerated chatter decoration spiraling from the foot to the shoulder, the tacky clay lifted to a very coarse texture before firing. The neck to rim, also spiraling up the vase, finished smoothly. Apparently in the tradition of the stoneware tile work kilns of Bizen and Tokoname. Studio artist marks in impressed cartouches on the foot. Excellent condition. Height, 8 inches.
An unusual Bizen stoneware figural group depicting three sages with attributes in clouds in a stele formation. One with wheat and sword flanked by attendants, one also with wheat and sword and the other with a palm frond or banana leaf fan. The figures' attire and swords are Chinese in manner (as are many sages and deities in Japanese lore adopted from the Chinese.) It may be a less often seen interpretation of Daikoku considering the wheat and sword attributes and the attnedants (a common attendant of Daikoku being Ebisu.) Inscriptions on the back appear to relate to the figures. An impressed Bizen pottery mark in cartouche on the base. Good condition. Height, about 7 1/8 inches (18.1 cm)
A Bizen stoneware figural study of Daikokuten with attributes including full face, large earlobes, smile, hat, bag of rice and mallet. Impressed signature cartouche. Good condition. Height, about 7 1/2 inches (19.05 cm). Length about 8 inches (20.32 cm).
A nicely modeled and painted Mingei Kokeshi doll from one piece of wood retaining original bark. Where cut against the grain, top and bottom, having accumulated a patina - darker on the top. Painted decoration slightly worn - particularly the face from rubbing but still retaining the outline of the eyes. Signed on the side but obscured from rubbing of the paper-like top layer of the bark. Condition otherwise good. Height 11 3/8 inches (28.89 cm)
A pair of Kokeshi dolls. Good, painted Mingei works both with inscriptions and signatures - one also on the base. Heads moveable. Mid 20th century. Excellent condition. Height, each, about 12 inches (30.48 cm).
This katana (69.09 cm [27.2 inches] cutting edge) was purchased in May, 2014. Signed Kashu Ju Kanewaka Tsukuru/Zo. It was left in the care of a second party subsequently invited into the investment. I hold title as the principal and also retain correspondence introduced with the purchase as well as a Shinsa document (images of tang [nakago] attached - note the three mekugi-ana [retaining holes] though ubu [not shortened].) I am offering $500 for the safe return of the katana and another $500 for information establishing the identity of the original source of one or more transactions that might have occurred after the second party was unable to account for the katana (the same week of May, 2014.) I will offer $200 for corroborated identity and contact information of any party now possessing the katana and resulting in successfully completed communication confirming same. Inscription on the other side of the tang gives a date consistent with Kanewaka I. But the shinsa dismisses the attribution and judges the katana and mei as Kanewaka III. The verso further includes a cutting test inscription (futatsu-do.) The Russo-Japanese war tsuka (hilt), if not also the later saya (scabbard), may have been subsequently stripped. The blade may appear different if polished but the nakago will remain constant. If this sword is offered to you, it is not offered with clear title. If you have purchased this sword, you do not have title to it and you cannot resell it. It is LOST or STOLEN property. Contact me immediately to return this sword to my possession.
A Japanese blue and white porcelain model of a figure in boat. The boat with decorated panels of fishing scenes - on shore, in boat and traveling overland with fishing poles. One of the panels with boat decoration resembling the present model with auspicious symbol and fret decoration suggesting a basketry canopy. A removable piece with modeled figure rests loosely atop the boat as if a partial cover - the boat apparently intended to to hold perhaps burning incense. Kiln sand adheres irregularly to the foot of the boat. Good condition. Length, 5 1/2 inches (13.9 cm). Height, 3 3/4 inches (9.5 cm)
Emperor and Empress Hina dolls. Extraordinary condition perhaps owing to the original tomobako (storage boxes.) The heads (signed below the necks), hand, and feet being lacquered, carved wood. Painted crystal, inlaid eyes. There is no composition material - the dolls and all the accessories made with metal, lacquer, wood and paper (can't tell if the beads on the Empress' crown are glass or coral.) The Empress' fan with beautifully hand painted scene. A completely circular label on each box. One rubbed rectangular lable on one of the boxes can make out "DAIMARU OSAKA". Daimaru Dry Goods changed its name to simply Daimaru in 1928. A decade later, the United States began adopting increasingly limiting trade restrictions against Japan. This history and the doll quality put these between 1928 and 1939. Emperor height, 8 1/8 inches (20.64 cm) to topknot. Empress height, about 7 3/8 inches (18.7 cm) to topknot or about 8 1/16 inches (20.48 cm) including the tiara. Add another 3 1/2 inches height to each for the tatami and lacquer bases. The well crafted tomobako (boxes) each are 14 3/16 inches x 14 13/16 inches x 9 9/16 inches.
A slip inlaid olive drab celadon stoneware pottery pear form bottle vase. Decoration of fish in black inlaid slip over a ground of white slip inlaid punched flowerheads. Possibly Japanese (see Korean legacy wares from provinces in Kyushu [Hizen, Higo, Satsuma] illustrated in Morse) and possibly Korean Joseon era punchong ware. Signed on bottom. Excellent condition. Indeterminate age (capped conservatively with this listing and likely at least a little earlier.) This strongly potted piece (1.01 kg, or 2.23 lb) would make a handsome addition whether Japanese or Korean to a more informed collector. Height, 7 3/4 inches (19.7 cm)
Japanese Kamakura-Bori lacquer box on tray. The cover with bold, high-relief carving of bird in branch - the almost black surface rubbed to a soft, coral-red toned burnished finish. The softly irregular honeycomb textured ground with leathery texture continuing to the sides of the box bottom and into the rim of the tray with edges also rubbed to the underlying coral-red and burnished smooth. Signed under the tray. Surfaces with some distress from use including minor rubbing and scratching with very little lacquer loss. One smaller side of the cover had been detached and poorly glued back with the complication of some warping. This object presents a very promising conservation project. Tray length, 7 3/4 inches (19.7 cm)
Rare "Buddha Asuka (B)" woodblock print by Kiyoshi Saito, 1955, number 40 of only 50 printed, signed in white ink and sealed in red ink both on the image area. Signed and sealed printed label "self-carved self printed" also included (attached to paper backing removed to inspect condition.)
We were not able to find a recent auction record for this image with data available. Another mid-century work by Saito (in color) titled Asuka (Kudara Kannon) [possibly confused by the artist with one of the Roku Kannon also of the Horyuji] was bestowed in 1959 by the artist to the Collection of The University of Michigan Museum of Art. It is noted that Saito was creating works in a series of early Nara sculptures around the time. A Saito subject similar to the present, muted work (but printed two years later in a run of 100) of another Nara sculpture, Miroku, was offered in Christies sale 8862, lot 306 together with a Winter in Aizu print.
The muted colors of the present work is a reflection of the somber lighting within the temples housing sculptures of this period.
Condition of the present work is good, with some toning and with brown paper tape around the edges (covering up to about a half inch margin.) A penciled note (from the framer?) appears in the margin on the verso. Some ink bleed on the verso from the original printing not at all compromising the image. Not clear if this was the first framing, the print was nonetheless not removed for some time until we removed the backing to inspect condition (image included of verso before removing paper.) Sheet height about 33 inches, sheet width about 21 1/4 inches. Image height about 29 5/8 inches, image width about 16 inches.