The Kura - Japanese Art Treasures
Robert Mangold has been working with Japanese antiques since 1995 with an emphasis on ceramics, Paintings, Armour and Buddhist furniture.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Lacquer : Pre 1920 item #1486054
The Kura
Price on Request
A spectacular Meiji to Taisho period Golden box decorated with a spray of flowers under an imperial Chrysanthemum. The interior and bottom are elegant Nashiji, and the border between box and lid is protected by a solid silver rim. Kirigane cut gold flakes decorate the raised leaves. It comes enclosed in a custom made kiri-wood storage box. The gilded receptacle is 30 x 24.5 x 14 cm (12 x 9-3/4 x 5-1/2 inches) and it is in excellent condition.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Lacquer : Pre 1800 item #1492274 (stock #K012)
The Kura
Price on Request
An incredible lacquered screen decorated with a Bugaku Dancer wearing an angry devil mask opposing a snake in incredibly thick relief opposite three gentlemen heating sake over a fire under the changing leaves of a maple, their oxcart off to the side. An inlaid cartouche near the snake reads Kan. The two-sided panel is set into a frame with matt black iron texture over a raw kiri-wood panel inset with three windows. It is 45 x 16.5 x 40.5 cm (18 x 6-1/2 x 16 inches) and is in overall excellent condition, enclosed in an age darkened wooden box titled Haritsu Kenbyo. Off to the side a paper label gives a household collection number, and a further stamp shows it was recorded in an audit in Showa 14 (1939).
Ogawa Haritsu (1663-1747), also known as Ritsuo, one of the great individualists in the history of lacquer, was a poet as well as a painter, potter and lacquerer. Born into the samurai class, he renounced arms for the brush. In the 1680s, he became a disciple of the haiku poet Matsuo Basho (1644-1694). Haritsu turned to lacquer after 1707, the year his friends Hattori Ransetsu and Takarai Kikaku, both disciples of Basho, died. He adopted the art name Ritsuo, or "Old man in a torn bamboo hat," in 1712. The name suggests a poet or artist wandering carefree. A revival of interest in Haritsu's style and techniques during the 19th century is best exemplified in the copies of his work by Shibata Zeshin (1807-1891), the foremost Japanese lacquerer of the 19th century.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Porcelain : Pre 1920 item #1491354
The Kura
$7,800.00
Pink and blue iris blossom among the green promise of Spring promised on this elegant vase by Miyagawa (Makuzu) Kozan enclosed in a wooden box annotated by the current head of the Makuzu Family in Kyoto, Makuzu Kosai. It is titled Yukasai Shobu no zu Kabin. It is 30.7 cm (12 inches) tall and in excellent condition.
The name Kozan was granted by Prince Yasui-no-Miya in 1851 in honor of the tea ware produced during the later Edo for the imperial Court by the tenth generation head of the Kyoto pottery family Miyagawa Chozo. The Kozan (Makuzu) kiln as we know it today was established in Yokohama in 1871 by the 11th generation head of the family where he reinvented the family business. He immediately set out on a journey which would propel the Kozan name to International Celebrity status, and send his wares throughout the globe. Pieces produced there were marked Kozan, or Makuzu, the official kiln name, or both. Although he had been running the daily operation since the late 19th century, the first son, Hanzan, succeeded as head of the kiln, in 1912, with the father officially retiring to spend more time on his own research and art. Kozan I dies in 1916. The kiln was run by Hanzan through the early Showa era, he officially taking the name Kozan II in 1917, after one year mourning for his fathers passing. Under Hanzan the kiln was commissioned for works to be presented to the Prince of Wales, the 25th wedding anniversary gift for the Taisho emperor and the Showa Emperors coronation gift. The kiln was completely destroyed in the bombing of Yokohama in 1945. For more on this illustrious family see Bridging East and West, Japanese Ceramics from the Kozan Studio by Kathleen Emerson-Dell.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Baskets : Pre 1930 item #1492419 (stock #K006)
The Kura
$7,800.00
A masterpiece basket made from used split bamboo arrows by Maeda Chikubosai enclosed in the original signed wooden box titled Jidai Yadake-sei Hanamori (Basket made of Old Arrows) dated Showa 5 (1930). Hints of red and gold lacquer give clues to the origin of the bamboo shafts, making this an example of one of the most sought of all types of baskets by this elusive artist. It is roughly 19 cm (7-1/2 inches) diameter, 49 cm (19 inches) tall and in excellent, original condition. Maeda Chikubosai I (1872-1950) was one of the most important bamboo artists working in the first half of the 20th century and was pivotal in promoting individual expression in the bamboo arts. Chikubosai I was from the Kansai Region and active in Sakai, Osaka prefecture. He was instructed by Wada Waichisai I (1851-1901). From 1912, he worked alongside Tanabe Chikuunsai I (1877-1937). Late in the Taisho era (1912-1926), he made presentation baskets on behalf of the Imperial Household. Chikubosai's bamboo flower baskets, in particular, gained widespread acclaim for their exquisite craftsmanship and elegant designs. He experimented with various weaving techniques, incorporating intricate patterns and textures to create visually stunning pieces that were both functional and decorative.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Stoneware : Pre 1900 item #1489417
The Kura
$3,800.00
A pair of vases in the shape of old wooden well buckets (tsurube) in white glaze upon which is scrawled in beautiful grass scrip a poem by Otagaki Rengetsu. The poem reads: Yamazato wa
matsu no koe nomi
kiki nare te
kaze fuka nu hi wa
sabishikari keri
Which translates as:
Living deep in the mountains
I’ve grown fond
of the soughing pines
On days when the wind is still
how lonely it is
Each is roughly 15 cm (just under 6 inches) square 18.5 cm (7-1/4 inches) tall and both are in excellent condition. ).
Otagaki Rengetsu (1791-1875) was born into a samurai family, she was adopted into the Otagaki family soon after birth, and served as a lady in waiting in Kameoka Castle in her formative years, where she received an education worthy of a Lady of means. Reputed to be incredibly beautiful, she was married and bore three children; however, her husband and all children died before she was twenty. Remarried she bore another daughter, however that child too perished and her husband died while she was just 32. Inconsolable, she cut off her hair to join the nunnery at Chion-in Temple, where she renounced the world and received the name Rengetsu (Lotus Moon). However, this was not the end, but only the beginning of a career as artist and poet which would propel her to the top of the 19th century Japan literati art world.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Stoneware : Pre 1900 item #1487857
The Kura
$3,500.00
A radical Bizen Mizusashi with two lacquered wooden lids enclosed in a black lacquered wooden box with gold lacquer writing titled Samidare which is in turn enclosed in a kiri-wood storage box by the same title compartmentalized to allow the lids to be stored safely. Samidare is a poetic reading for Rain of the Fifth Month (June in the traditional calendar). It has a seal of overlapping rings impressed into the earth of the base, and dates from the Edo period. The lids are for differing events, one black lacquered, the other covered with gorgeous gold and silver maki-e clouds with a soaring nightingale in gold, inside the ghost of a crescent moon. The Vessel itself is crusted with ash and dribbles of ocher with kutsuki on the side where something adhered to it in the firing. Inside the trials of the artist fingers are clearly visible. The receptacle is 23 x 20 x 15 cm (9 x 8 x 6 inches) ad is in overall excellent original condition. A very impressive presentation. Inside the Kiri box is written that the piece was viewed by The honorable Mr. Inoue upon his visit in Meiji 45 (1912). Inside the black lacquered lid is a paper tablet which reads Matsue-jo Nushi Fumaiko Hakogaki (Box written by Fumaiko of Matsue Castle).
Among the successive lords of the Matsue domain was the 7th lord of the Matsudaira family, famous tea master and Zen acolyte Harusato Matsudaira (1751-1818). He is known by many people simply as Fumai, the name he took after shaving his head in retirement in 1806. At the age of 17 he became the lord of the fief; the domain was in dire financial trouble. Harusato appointed Goho Asahi Tanba as chief retainer and promoted a fiscal reconstruction plan. While making great efforts to reduce expenditures, such as reducing debts within the domain and reviewing the domain's personnel structure, they also sought to increase income through industrial promotion measures such as the cultivation of medicinal ginseng and wax. He succeeded in restoring the domain's prosperity. After rebuilding the domain's finances, he focused his efforts on collecting tea utensils that had been scattered one after another from feudal lords of the time. The collected items were later called ``Unshu specialties,'' and are highly valued by lovers of tea ceremony and art. Harusato's great achievement in the history of the tea ceremony was his 18-volume book, in which he further classified famous tea utensils. He also promoted arts and crafts within the Matsue domain, supporting many craftsmen in the worlds of pottery, lacquer, and woodwork.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Metalwork : Pre 1930 item #1487187
The Kura
$2,800.00
A beautifully crafted cast, carved, and parcel gilt bronze image of a samurai pulling back, arrow nocked, ready to let fly, signed in a metal cartouche on back Shunko-saku (made by Shunko). It is roughly 27.5 cm (11 inches) to the top of his hat, 25 cm (10 inches) from forefinger to elbow. The warrior is calm, determined, with a look of deep concentration in his inlaid eyes. He wears an eboshi, a formal type of hat, and is dressed in sumptuous, loose fitting robes with leggings and braces to protect his arms and legs. A short sword juts from his waist. The warrior's robes and pants feature large wagon wheel mon, known as genji guruma. The signed box identifies the figure as Minamoto no Tametomo (1139 - 1170) was a celebrated historical samurai of the Heian Period. Known for his impressive archery skills, he features as one of the epic warriors of the Hogen Rebellion, a precursor to the Genpei War. It is in excellent condition.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Stoneware : Pre 1900 item #1489793
The Kura
$2,800.00
An unprecedented 19th century ceramic sculpture of a tumble of Shishi lions in a playful fight covered in unusual green-blue glaze. The Banko mark is impressed into the white clay of the base. It is very unusual to find large sculptures or works in Banko ware. This is 30 × 25 x 26.5 cm (12 x 10 x 10-1/2 inches) and in excellent condition. It comes in a box titled Okimono Banko-yaki Gyoku (Jade?) Shishi, with an inscription inside stating it was named a famous piece of the Shrine in July of 1920.
Banko ware began in the mid Edo period with the establishment of a small kiln in Kuwanocho, Mie prefecture, by the merchant, potter and Tea aficionado Nunami Rozan who stamped his works with his store name Banko. He studied in Kyoto and other regional kilns and created a name for himself in tea circles. The pottery died with Rozan, however was revived in the late Edo period specializing in Sencha tea ware and earthenware eating utensils.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Lacquer : Pre 1930 item #1488230
The Kura
$2,750.00
Phoenix soar among golden clouds on this amazing Lacquer box made for holding a Tsuzumi drum by Miura Meiho (1900-1975) enclosed in the original signed wooden box titled Houn Maki-e Tuzumi Bako. It is bound with silk chord which is held to the box with solid silver hardware. Inside it is lined with brocade. The box is 30.5 x 24 x 24.5 cm (12 x 9-1/2 x 9-1/2 inches) an is in perfect condition.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Stoneware : Pre 1700 item #1492680 (stock #K072)
The Kura
$2,700.00
A small Shigaraki pottery urn of very rough clay dating from the 16th century covered in thin natural ash glaze. The squat form known as Uzukumaru is very popular for its simplicity in Japanese Tea Aesthetics. About the shoulder is a lattice fence design engraved into the earth, otherwise it is unadorned and very humble. It is 14 cm (5-1/2 inches) diameter, roughly the same height enclosed in an ancient wooden storage box. There is an old age-darkened chip to the rim, otherwise is in surprisingly condition,
Appreciation of ancient Shigaraki pottery encapsulates a profound appreciation for imperfection, transience, and simplicity. Wabi-sabi cherishes the beauty found in the imperfect, the weathered, and the natural, fostering a sense of humility and acceptance. This philosophy values authenticity over artificial perfection, encouraging a deeper connection with nature and the passage of time. Similarly, the Japanese tea aesthetic, rooted in the tea ceremony's ritualistic practices, emphasizes harmony, respect, and tranquility. Together, they invite individuals to embrace the fleeting moments of life, finding solace and serenity in the subtle beauty of the everyday.
All Items : Artists : Metalwork : Pre 2000 item #1491692 (stock #K003)
The Kura
$2,600.00
A stellar modernist form with of cast bronze by Yamamuro Hyakusei in the form of a droplet splashing up as it hits the liquid surface. It is 25 cm (10 inches) diameter, 34.5cm (13-3/4 inches) tall and in excellent condition, enclosed in a custom kiri-wood collector’s box and is signed on the base Hyakusei.
Yamamuro Hyakusei (1900-1990) was a bronze casting artist born in Toyama prefecture. After graduating from Toyama Prefectural Takaoka Crafts School in 1919, he entered Hattori Watch Shop, working his way up to head of the arts and crafts department. In 1958, he won the Art Academy Award for his Bronze Flat Footed Vase. After retiring in 1961, he devoted himself to casting metal. He exhibited with and later also served as a Nitten Juror. He died on October 31, 1990. 89 years old. Work by him is held in the Museum of Contemporary Art Tokyo and Chiba Prefectural Museum among others.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Textiles : Pre 1900 item #1487190
The Kura
$2,500.00
A Hikeshi-Banten Fireman Jacket decorated with protective images of waves and birds outside in various dyed colors and sashiko stitching, the inside emblazoned with a dragon and tiger; symbols respectively of wisdom and protection (the dragon is a water god) and ferocity and bravery as the tiger knows no fear. The handmade coats were fashioned from several layers of highly absorbent quilted cotton fabric. They were then resist-dyed using the tsutsugaki method, which involved drawing rice-paste designs on the cloth, dyeing the cloth multiple times and then washing off the paste to reveal the layering of colors. They were worn plain side out and before firefighters entered the scene of a blaze, the coats were thoroughly soaked in water (they could weigh more than 75 pounds) to protect the men from burns and blunt the impact of falling objects as they went about their dangerous work. If firefighters were successful in extinguishing the blaze, they would turn their coats inside out and parade victoriously by cheering onlookers. According to the Denver Art Museum:
Decoration was important to firefighters’ garments, which were far from purely utilitarian uniforms. Firefighters enjoyed respect and high status in urban Japan, especially in Edo, where wood architecture and crowded living conditions led to frequent outbreaks of fire. Commoners wore reversible coats (hikeshi-banten) made of thick, quilted cotton fabric, with a plain indigo-dyed exterior and an elaborately decorated interior.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Stoneware : Pre 1700 item #1487331
The Kura
$2,500.00
A shard has been grafted into the side of this large misshapen Shino bottle dating from the Momoyama to early Edo period, the repair lined with gold. Gold also circle the neck where the discarded misfire was repaired, and gleams on the lip. It is 22 cm (9 inches) tall and in excellent condition. It comes in an age darkened wooden box titled Ko-Shino Tokkuri, Shoki no Kama (Old Shino Tokkuri, early Kiln era)
This method of using pieces from multiple works with lacquer repair is called Yobitsugi. Yobitsugi is a form of kintsugi that entails combining pieces of different objects together in order to create a completely new vessel. The newly created vessel is typically made of 60% – 70% of the first vessel and 30%-40% of the second vessel. It is said that this technique was used as a sign of reconciliation between two warring factions during the Sengoku Period, the era of warfare surrounding the 1500s. It was common for the leaders of these factions to hold tea ceremonies with each other to negotiate peace. It is said that, when the negotiations were successful, yobitsugi was used to combine the tea sets used at the meeting where peace was decided.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Sculpture : Pre 1900 item #1487484
The Kura
$2,500.00
A carved wood figure of a wandering priest, robes billowing in the wind, his large straw hat full of holes, signed Yasuchika on the back. Dating from the late Edo to Meiji period, it is by a member of the Tsuchiya Yasuchika lineage. The figure is 31 cm (12 inches) tall and in excellent condition, complete with walking stick.
All Items : Vintage Arts : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Enamel : Pre 1980 item #1491936 (stock #K005)
The Kura
$2,500.00
A staggeringly beautiful set of unique Cloisonne vases featuring opposing designs of red flowers on white and white flowers on red. Each is roughly 15 cm (6 inches) diameter, 36.5 cm (14-1/2 inches) tall and are both in excellent condition, enclosed in a compartmentalized kiri-wood collector’s box dating from the middle of the 20th century.
Japanese cloisonné, known as "shippo-yaki" in Japanese, has a rich history dating back to ancient times, but it particularly flourished during the Meiji period (1868-1912). Cloisonné is an ancient technique of decorating objects, typically made of copper or bronze, with colored enamel. The origins of cloisonné in Japan can be traced back to the Nara period (710-794), when the technique was introduced from China and Korea. However, it was during the late 19th century that Japanese cloisonné gained international recognition. During the Meiji period, Japan underwent rapid modernization and industrialization. As part of this process, the Japanese government actively promoted traditional crafts as a means of showcasing Japanese culture to the world. Cloisonné was one of the crafts that experienced a revival during this time. Japanese cloisonné became extremely popular in Europe and the United States during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It was exhibited at world's fairs and international exhibitions, where it received acclaim for its exquisite craftsmanship and intricate designs.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Stoneware : Pre 1920 item #1492676 (stock #K074)
The Kura
$2,500.00
An anonymous hyper realistic ceramic version of a skull about which crawls snake, circling down the cheek and exiting through the eye socket, late Meiji to Taisho period. It is 11 x 16.5 x 10 cm. This type of object was popular in the later 19th to early 20th centuries as a talisman. The dilapidated wooden box bears a label reading Mayoke Ko-To-Sei Dokuro (Protective Old Ceramic Skull).
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Devotional Objects : Pre 1900 item #1487185
The Kura
$2,400.00
A very large mask of heavily carved wood covered in black lacquer with golden eyes dating from the mid Edo period (18th century). There are minor losses to the lacquer on the cheeks and along the edges typical of age. It is 37.5 x 30 cm (14-1/2 x 12 inches) and is in overall fine condition.
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Asian : Japanese : Furniture : Pre 1930 item #1491821 (stock #K044)
The Kura
$2,200.00
A fabulous Rootwood stand of dark red hardwood with a web of interlacing root-legs beneath. It is 48 x 32 x 8 cm (19 x 12-1/2 x 3 inches) and is in overall fine condition, dating from the first half of the 20th century.