Project Description

Lacquered and Inlaid Bamboo Incense Container, by Nomura Chohei (active 1760-1810)

Decorated in relief with a wistaria seed pod hanging from a vine, with a dragonfly hovering beneath. The technique is high relief takamakie and tsuishu lacquer with inlays of raden and worn pewter; fitted with a stopper faced in a disc of shell, carved in bas-relief with a smooth dragon
Signed with a seal kan

23 cm

​​In the book of the Atchley collection the container is not attributed, but physical comparison of it with the brush container in the same volume, no. S87, signed by Chohei, reveals that they both have a distinctive nothc cut towards the base of the bamboo which is lacquered with distinctive makie floral decoration. The inlay, especially the lacquered pewter, seems to me entirely consistent with what I have seen on Chohei’s work. Further corroboration of the attribution is provided by a manju netsuke with similar subject, signed Chohei, in the Tokyo National Museum, published in H. Arakawa, The Gō Collection of Netsuke, pp. 126-127, no. 248

Provenance:

Virginia and Susan Atchley, LA, sold by order of the latter’s executors

Literature:

Sydney L. Moss Ltd., Eccentrics in Netsuke, pp. 32-33, no. 22, attributed to Ritsuo
Atchley & Davey, The Virginia Atchley Collection, no. S53, unattributed

MR1031

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