By Tsuishu Yozei (Yozei), signed Yozei 楊成 tsukuru 造
Japan, 18th century, Edo period (1615-1868)
Published: Meinertzhagen, Frederick / Lazarnick, George (1986) MCI, Part B, p. 981.
The hako (box) netsuke of rectangular quatrefoil shape, consisting of two parts, and worked in fine tsuishu (carved red lacquer), the front with an image of a large shishi playfully snarling next to a rock issuing a blooming peony. The reverse incised with a stunning asanoha ground and further with a design of brocade balls, a favorite toy of the Buddhist lion. The interior lacquered in black. Signed to the black lacquered interior YOZEI zo [made by Yozei]. Large himotoshi to the back, the looped cord attachment within.
LENGTH 4.3 cm
Condition: Good condition with minor expected wear to lacquer. One of the side panels restored.
Provenance: Ex-collection Mrs. F. M. Allhusen. Sold at Sotheby’s London, December 1930.
Yozei, sometimes also written as Yosei, was the hereditary name given to a famous family of lacquerers, which dated back to the mid-fourteenth century and which specialized in tsuishu in the style of Chinese carved lacquers. Betty Jahss notes that their tsuishu “far surpasses the Chinese work in richness and color, beauty, skill of carving and variation of design”. The artist family is listed in Wrangham, (1995) The Index of Inro Artists, pp. 331-332.
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