Project Description

Rare Tall Wood Netsuke of a Rakan with Rosary

A gaunt, skeletal rakan stands clad in a long skirt and encircled by an oversized mala (rosary) which he clutches with both hands while a skinny homunculus clings to the end of the scarf which is draped around the ascetic

One of the most striking aspects of this most unusual netsuke is the distorted cheeks of the rakan which seem to be suggestive of some sort of decomposition. One can almost discern smaller contorted faces in the misshapen flesh

Unsigned. Circa 1800

Height 11 cm

I am grateful to Ben Peters for pointing me to another netsuke by the artist in the Röhsska Museum, Gothenburg, Sweden.:

https://emp-web-35.zetcom.ch/eMP/eMuseumPlus?service=direct/1/ResultLightboxView/result.t1.collection_lightbox.$TspTitleImageLink.link&sp=10&sp=Scollection&sp=SfieldValue&sp=0&sp=0&sp=3&sp=Slightbox_3x4&sp=228&sp=Sdetail&sp=0&sp=F&sp=T&sp=232

Provenance:

Marc Severin collection

Literature:

Japanese Embassy, London, In a Nutshell, 2013, no. 10

MR4666

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