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$ 9,600

Fine and Rare Noh Mask by Nakamura Fuseki 1824 Edo Period

Documentation Signed
Origin Japan
Period 19th Century
Materials Wood with paint
W. 5.3 in; H. 8 in; D. 2 in;
W. 13.46 cm; H. 20.32 cm; D. 5.08 cm;
Condition Good. Wear consistent with age and use. Fine antique condition with fine patina, minor wear above the eyes as shown.
Creation Date 1824
Description A rare painted wood mask for Noh theater signed by the artist Nakamura Fuseki and dated to 1824, of Edo period. The mask depicts Kijiru-Ayakashi, a spirit of wood juice, and used for the Noh play "Funabenkei". It was finely carved and painted to depict a man with an expression that seems hard to interpret. The work has dimensional quality with a rather precise but stylized anatomy. The facial hair, including the eyebrows and mustaches were meticulously painted with ink in a slightly comical way. What strikes the viewer is the mystery of his expression. With his almond shaped eyes and mouth open, he seems to be on the brink of possible laughing, or crying or perhaps being shocked to a sudden gasp. The mask is such a great combination of realism and surrealism with an expression that appears both eruptive and passive simultaneously. Not only the mask has been wonderfully preserved, it also retains a gilt Kanji inscription on the back that reads "Da Zheng Seventh Year April Made by Nakamura Fuseki". This dates the make of the mask to the year of 1824, the late Edo period. A mask with such great condition as well as signature and date is rather uncommon.
See another very similar mask of Kijiru-Ayakashi by the same artist but made in 1810, see collection item No:11002000 in Ishikawa Prefectural Museum of Art in Japan.
Styles / Movements Asian, Bespoke, Traditional
Patterns Asian/Oriental, Handmade
Incollect Reference Number 403844
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