Art, Creativity, Photography, Travel, Writing

Friday finds: netsuke

I have just finished reading Edmund de Waal’s The hare with amber eyes: a family’s century of art and loss; it’s neither a biography nor an autobiography but a family memoir, a genre with which I was unfamiliar until I read the book.

The author traces the story of a collection of 264 netsuke – from their arrival in his family in Vienna during the height of the rage for Japonisme to their return to Japan with his uncle – alongside the story of his family from their starting point as grain merchants in Odessa, then to being rich Jewish bankers in pre-war Vienna, to their end, in much straitened circumstances in post-war England.

Netsuke are small, tactile miniature sculptures usually made of ivory, box or fruitwood depicting fruit, animals or humans engaged in a variety of activities (often sexual). They were originally designed as toggles for clothing and have a couple of holes in the back through which cords were threaded.

A friend of ours has a small collection of his own. These are some of his netsuke.

netsuke group

Kim Klassen came up with the idea of sharing Friday Finds.

Please let me know what you think about this post, I welcome your thoughts

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