Project Description

Newly Discovered Tall Ivory Netsuke of a Dutch Hunter by Masanao of Kyoto

Dressed in a long coat engraved with waves, he balances his trussed bag from each end of his firearm, a hare in front and a deer behind. The back of the netsuke is a deep yellow. The Dutchman’s eye pupils are inlays of buffalo horn

Unsigned. Circa 1780

Height: 9.2 cm

While this netsuke is unsigned, one has only to compare it with three Dutch hunters in the Kurstin collection (two of them most readily found in the Boston catalogue by J. Earle, ‘Netsuke, Fantasy and Reality ….’ pp. 92 -93, nos. 58 and 59), and another formerly in the Szechenyii collection (sold in her sale at Bonhams London, 8th November 2011, lot 98), to be convinced of its authorship. Apart from the characteristic carving around the mouth, almost as if the Dutchman was missing his bottom teeth, the animals have heads typical of the great Kyoto master