2nd Dec, 2022 13:00

Fine Japanese Art

 
  Lot 81
 

81

SHOKAKEN: A LARGE AND EXCEPTIONAL BRONZE KORO (INCENSE BURNER) AND COVER WITH THE TWELVE ANIMALS OF THE ZODIAC (JUNISHI)

Sold for €2,600

including Buyer's Premium


Lot details

By Oshima Yasutaro (Shokaken), signed Dai Nihon Kanda kawabe ju, Shokaken kore wo chu
Japan, late 19th century, Meiji period (1868-1912)

Finely cast, the compressed globular body supported on a tall, prominent foot and rising to a broad cylindrical neck with galleried rim, flanked by two handles in the form of baying kirin with exquisitely rendered curved horns, scrolling manes, and muscular bodies. The slightly domed cover is surmounted by two karako, one standing wearing a shishimai mask and the other seated beside a drum incised with a mitsudomo-e symbol and holding a stick, both showing cheerful expressions. The koro and cover are crisply cast with finely worked diapered patterns, the body is further cast in relief with the twelve animals of the zodiac, each dynamically rendered and neatly detailed to convey the mythical race that would determine their order in the zodiac. The foot is raised on five legs in the form of winged kirin with elongated bodies atop a circular base decorated with concentric diapered bands encircling a raised central medallion cast in relief with sparrows in flight amid swirling clouds. The underside of the foot is cast with the inscription and signature Dai-Nihon Kanda kawabe ju, SHOKAKEN kore wo chu (‘This is cast by Shokaken, resident by the Kanda River, Great Japan’).

HEIGHT 75 cm
WEIGHT 19 kg

Oshima Yasutaro (artist name: Shokaken) was born to a prominent family of metalworkers in 1849 and was the son of Oshima Takajiro. Together with his younger brother Oshima Joun (1858–1940), he successfully ran a studio called Sanseisha and produced bronzes of the finest quality. In Recollections of Oshima Joun, by Katori Hozuma published in 1941 by Tokyo Chukin-kai (Tokyo Cast Metalwork Association), he talked of his older brother who died young as being of the first rank of bronze metalwork artists in 1878, producing works of the very highest quality and commissioned for the world exhibitions. Shokaken indeed exhibited his works at numerous international expositions, including a metalwork incense burner at the Vienna World Exposition in 1873, which is now housed in the Austrian Museum of Applied Arts and Contemporary Art, Vienna (Illustrated in Arts of East and West from World Expositions 1855-1900: Paris, Vienna and Chicago (Commemorating the 2005 World Exposition, Aichi, Japan), (Osaka, 2004), p. 20, plate l-16).

Condition: Very good condition with minor wear, minimal casting flaws, few minuscule nicks, occasional light surface scratches.
Provenance: French private collection.

Auction comparison:
Compare a related bronze koro by Shokaken, 50 cm high, at Zacke, 3 December 2021, Vienna, lot 8 (sold for EUR 4,045).

 

By Oshima Yasutaro (Shokaken), signed Dai Nihon Kanda kawabe ju, Shokaken kore wo chu
Japan, late 19th century, Meiji period (1868-1912)

Finely cast, the compressed globular body supported on a tall, prominent foot and rising to a broad cylindrical neck with galleried rim, flanked by two handles in the form of baying kirin with exquisitely rendered curved horns, scrolling manes, and muscular bodies. The slightly domed cover is surmounted by two karako, one standing wearing a shishimai mask and the other seated beside a drum incised with a mitsudomo-e symbol and holding a stick, both showing cheerful expressions. The koro and cover are crisply cast with finely worked diapered patterns, the body is further cast in relief with the twelve animals of the zodiac, each dynamically rendered and neatly detailed to convey the mythical race that would determine their order in the zodiac. The foot is raised on five legs in the form of winged kirin with elongated bodies atop a circular base decorated with concentric diapered bands encircling a raised central medallion cast in relief with sparrows in flight amid swirling clouds. The underside of the foot is cast with the inscription and signature Dai-Nihon Kanda kawabe ju, SHOKAKEN kore wo chu (‘This is cast by Shokaken, resident by the Kanda River, Great Japan’).

HEIGHT 75 cm
WEIGHT 19 kg

Oshima Yasutaro (artist name: Shokaken) was born to a prominent family of metalworkers in 1849 and was the son of Oshima Takajiro. Together with his younger brother Oshima Joun (1858–1940), he successfully ran a studio called Sanseisha and produced bronzes of the finest quality. In Recollections of Oshima Joun, by Katori Hozuma published in 1941 by Tokyo Chukin-kai (Tokyo Cast Metalwork Association), he talked of his older brother who died young as being of the first rank of bronze metalwork artists in 1878, producing works of the very highest quality and commissioned for the world exhibitions. Shokaken indeed exhibited his works at numerous international expositions, including a metalwork incense burner at the Vienna World Exposition in 1873, which is now housed in the Austrian Museum of Applied Arts and Contemporary Art, Vienna (Illustrated in Arts of East and West from World Expositions 1855-1900: Paris, Vienna and Chicago (Commemorating the 2005 World Exposition, Aichi, Japan), (Osaka, 2004), p. 20, plate l-16).

Condition: Very good condition with minor wear, minimal casting flaws, few minuscule nicks, occasional light surface scratches.
Provenance: French private collection.

Auction comparison:
Compare a related bronze koro by Shokaken, 50 cm high, at Zacke, 3 December 2021, Vienna, lot 8 (sold for EUR 4,045).

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