Ephemeritor
              Antiques & Collectibles

(844) 828-7855
P.O. Box 12048, Tempe, AZ 85284
   Facebook   

 


Shop by Category

Japanese Bone Carved Figures Man & Woman Mounted. 20th Century

SKU: Japanese Bone Carved Figures $49.95
Ivory was not a prestigious material in the rather strict hierarchy of Chinese art, where jade has always been far more highly regarded, and rhinoceros horn, which is not ivory, had a special auspicious position. But ivory, as well as bone, has been used for various items since early times, when China still had its own species of elephant a'' demand for ivory seems to have played a large part in their extinction, which came before 100 BC. From the Ming Dynasty ivory began to be used for small statuettes of the gods and others. In the Ching Dynasty it suited the growing taste for intricate carving, and became more prominent, being used for brush-holders, boxes, handles and similar pieces, and later Canton developed large models of houses and other large and showy pieces, which remain popular. Enormous examples are still seen as decorative centrepieces at government receptions. Figures were typically uncoloured, or just with certain features coloured in ink, often just black, but sometimes a few other colours. By the 18th century China had a considerable market in items such as figures made for export to Europe, and from the Meiji Period Japan followed. Japanese ivory for the domestic market had traditionally mostly been small objects such as netsuke, for which ivory was used from the 17th century, or little inlays for sword-fittings and the like, but in the later 19th century, using African ivory, pieces became as large as the material would allow, and carved with virtuosic skill. A speciality was round puzzle balls of openwork that contained a series of smaller balls, freely rotating, inside them, a tribute to the patience of Asian craftsmen.