A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century
Lot 92
A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant
By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century
Sold for £84,000 (US$ 134,823) inc. premium

Lot Details
A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century
A rare and finely-inlaid lacquer okimono of an elephant
By Ogawa Haritsu/Ritsuo (1663-1747), 18th century
Recumbent, its head turned to the right and its trunk raised, wearing an elaborate harness and saddle-cloth decorated in low relief with a large peony in bloom, the details inlaid in silver, gold, tsuishu, blue and green-glazed pottery, hardstones and mother-of-pearl, its eyes inlaid in glass with black pupils, signed Muchuan Haritsu with seal Kan.
14cm x 25.1cm (5½in x 9¾in).

Footnotes

  • 漆塗象置物 小川破笠(笠翁)作 銘「夢中庵破笠 観(方印)」 18世紀

    Provenance: an English private collection, where it has remained for at least one hundred years. According to the family, this was acquired by descent from their grandfather.

    Ogawa Haritsu, who is usually known by his sobriquet, Ritsuo, was one of the first artists to incorporate diverse materials into his lacquerwares, utilizing the excellent adhesive qualities of lacquer to combine glazed ceramic, metal, shell, and other materials with traditional maki-e techiques for lacquer decoration. 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.

    The design, decorative technique and obvious age of this piece point very strongly to this being the work of Ogawa Ritsuo; see a similarly conceived and lacquered netsuke of a recumbent elephant, sold at Sotheby's London, 20th February 1986, lot 108. Compare also with the eclectic combination of styles and media used in the decoration of a sumptuously-caparisoned standing elephant ornamenting a suzuribako by the artist, in the Hikone Castle Museum, illustrated, Nihon no Bijutsu 10, no.389, p.1 and discussed inter alia, ibid., pp.17-80 by Haino Akio. Compare also with another example in the Osaka City Museum of Fine Arts, illustrated, ibid., p.5, illus. pl.9.
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