An incredibly detailed, finely stained and carved miniature masterpiece depicting a young boy riding a hobby horse. The boy must be from a wealthy background as he is wearing elaborately worked clothing with inlays of red and green-stained horn. A little pouch is tied to his obi. The expression and mane of the horse are finely carved and the little wheel, which also shows horn-inlay, emerges from the underside. Minutely engraved signature RYOMIN 陵民 with kao on the underside. Himotoshi seem to be absent, though there are natural possibilities.
HEIGHT 4.2 cm
Condition: Superb condition.
Provenance: The Gabor Wilhelm Collection.
Literature comparison: A similar netsuke with two boys and hobby horse is shown in F. Meinertzhagen, MCI Part B, New York, 1986, page 658.
Auction comparison: For a comparable netsuke by Ono Ryomin see Christie’s, Arts Asiatiques, 19 November 2003, Paris, lot 54.
Ono Ryomin of Tokyo, born in 1833, was a student of Ho Rakumin. He was known, amongst others, for his extremely fine depictions of children.