Tomochika - 5501

Tomochika, Edo/Tokyo school

Daruma
late 19th century
ivory  
7,8x3,7x3,2 cm
signature
友親 (Tomochika)
2005 bequest Maria Taglietti Lanfranchi
Inv. 5501



In this netsuke Daruma, Indian monk founder of Zen Buddhism, often represented irreverently in the Japanese tradition, is depicted standing, while he is stretching his limbs after the long stillness to which he had voluntarily submitted himself. The two holes of the himotoshi of equal size are placed horizontally in the back of the figure. The signature Tomochika  (友 親) is engraved in a red lacquer plaque placed under the base which has the shape of a leaf.

The author of this netsuke, made in the Meiji period (1868 to 1921), is very likely Chinnosuke Tomochika, grandson of the founder of the prolific workshop of Tomochika in Tokyo, specialized in the production of ivory netsuke and okimono, and where he became a master in 1863.

The Lanfranchi collection has several examples of pieces by artists of the Tomochika school such as Tomotaka, Tomotoshi, Hidechika and Masatoshi Shinkeisai. In particular, note how in the piece by Tomotoshi the same iconography to represent Daruma is used.

G.R.

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