Japan, Osaka, ca. 1780-1800, Edo period (1615-1868)
Published: Sydney L. Moss Ltd. (2006) More Things in Heaven and Earth, p. 66, no. 25 (as a comparative example).
The lean and indubitably male beast sits upright on its haunches lifting both front paws, its mouth wide opened showing teeth and tongue. The ribs are well rendered, and the vertebrae of the spine are neatly articulated. On the naturalistically carved base stands an openworked craggy rock containing a loose ball. One himotoshi to the base, the other between the base and bushy tail. The ivory bearing a superb patina.
HEIGHT 3.9 cm, LENGTH 3.8 cm
Condition: Excellent condition with minor surface wear and one fine age crack to the body.
Provenance: Sydney L. Moss Ltd., London, ex-collection June Schuerch, acquired from the above.
Compare a related ivory netsuke of a shishi climbing a dead tree, with similar expression and features, also unsigned, illustrated in Hurtig, Bernard (1973) Masterpieces of Netsuke Art: One Thousand Favorites of Leading Collectors, p. 156, no. 642.
Compare to a closely related ivory netsuke, undoubtedly carved by the same hand as the present netsuke, sold at Zacke, Fine Netsuke & Sagemono, 22 April 2022, Vienna, lot 65 (sold for 22,140 EUR).
Trade Certificate: The trade certificate for the sale of this lot within the EU has been granted (permit number AT 22-B-0523).
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