We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.

Title

Netsuke in the form of a Mongolian archer

19th century

Artists

Unknown Artist

  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Japan
    Period
    Meiji period 1868 - 1912 → Japan
    Date
    19th century
    Media category
    Sculpture
    Materials used
    carved ivory
    Dimensions
    10.6 x 4.0 cm
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Credit
    Bequest of Henry Albert Nathan 1941
    Location
    Not on display
    Accession number
    7159.40
    Copyright

    Reproduction requests

    Share
  • About

    Traditional Japanese clothes do not have pockets. Some objects such as multipurpose tissues or fans were carried in the bosom (between the front collars) while others, like 'inro' (men's medicine containers) and tobacco pouches, were hung from the waist by a cord which was slipped under the 'obi' (a sash worn around the waist) with a netsuke (toggle) at the other end to stop it from falling. These were fashion statements as well as practical objects, and are often beautiful works of art. 'Netsuke', usually made of wood or ivory/staghorn, represent a wide range of subjects - animal, mythical, exotic, humorous and erotic - and were eagerly collected in the West. The functional hole distinguishes a 'netsuke' from ornamental carved objects.

    'Netsuke', The Asian Collections, AGNSW, 2003, pg.223.

  • Places

    Where the work was made

    Japan

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 1 publication