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Collection

An image of Inkstone case with design of pine tree and citrus by Unknown
Alternate image of Inkstone case with design of pine tree and citrus by Unknown

Unknown

(Japan  – )

Title
Inkstone case with design of pine tree and citrus
Other titles:
Writing box suzuribako (containing inkstone and water dropper)
Inkstone case Suzuribako
Alternative title:
Matsu tachibana maki-e hira suzuri
Place of origin
Japan
Period
Edo (Tokugawa) period 1615 - 1868 → Japan
Year
17th century
Media category
Lacquerware
Materials used
lacquered wood, decorated in nashiji and gold "takamaki-e", inlaid with silver and gold foil
Dimensions

4.3 x 23.0 x 21.3 cm:

a - box; 3.6 x 22.2 x 20.4 cm

b - lid; 2.4 x 23 x 21.3 cm

c - inkstone tray; 21.4 x 9.9 cm

d - inside box; 1.8 x 21.4 x 9.7 cm

Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Credit
Gift of Mr Klaus Naumann 1989
Accession number
346.1989.a-d
Location
Not on display
Further information

The care and quality of the craftsmanship lavished on a box such as this is a testament to the high esteem in which the objects and utensils for writing and painting are held in both Japan and China. The practice of using a smooth dark stone moistened with water for rubbing and preparing the solid ink was introduced from China; however the elaborate box with its partitions for brushes, ink sticks and a water dropper is more in keeping with the Japanese tradition. The lid is ornamented with a design of pine tree with pomegranate; the inside with a stylised fishing net and bird pattern. The technique of 'nashiji' involves small flakes of gold of irregular shape and varying sizes being set in an almost random pattern in a bed of wet lacquer. 'Takamaki-e' is a technique in which the design is built up in relief and modelled in a mixture of lacquer and charcoal or clay dust.

Art Gallery Handbook, 1999. pg. 272.

Bibliography (5)

Bruce James, Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, 'Asian Collection: East Asia', pg. 246-287, Sydney, 1999, 272 (colour illus.).

Jackie Menzies, Art of the Brush - Chinese & Japanese painting calligraphy, Sydney, 1995, 23.

Jackie Menzies and Edmund Capon, Asian Collection Handbook, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Japanese Art', pg. 70-82, Sydney, 1990, 78 (colour illus.).

Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'The World of Samurai Culture', Sydney, 2003, 220 (colour illus.).

Public Programmes Department, Art Gallery of New South Wales and The Japan Foundation (Editors), Art speaks Japanese: Japanese language education kit from the collection of the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 2007, colour illus.. card no. 04

Exhibition history (1)

Art of the brush, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 23 Sep 1995–12 Nov 1995