Until 1st Jan, 2024

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LOT 168 - NE1123

Buy now for €2,600.00

Lot details

Japan, 19th century

Finely carved as a bearded Chokaro, dressed in a loose-fitting robe, clutching his double-gourd (hyotan) vessel, his eyes inlaid with dark horn, and mouth carved in a wide grin as he conjures his horse from his magical gourd. The interior of the hyotan inlaid with an minutely carved moveable horse carved with gilt eyes. Himotoshi to the back.

HEIGHT 3.7 cm

Condition: Very good condition with minor wear. The wood with a smooth patina.
Provenance: Ex-collection Guy de Lasteyrie. De Lasteyrie is a member of the Lasteyrie du Saillant family and is considered among the leading French collectors of netsuke.

The horse is the familiar of Chokaro Sennin, who is able to conjure the animal out of a gourd at will. The Japanese expression hyotan kara koma (lit. ‘a horse in the gourd’), referring to a completely unexpected event that actually comes to pass, akin to the flight of pigs in the English-speaking world.

Auction comparison:
Compare a related wood figure of Chokaro sennin, also with movable horse, at Christie’s, Art of Japan, 5 December 2017, London, lot 7 (sold for GBP 2,750).


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