By appointment only Atlanta, GA 30327 United States 305.400.0561
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$ 12,000

Rare Japanese Traveling Chest Edo Period

Origin United States
Period 18th Century
Materials wood, bamboo, paper, silk
W. 20.5 in; H. 34 in; D. 19 in;
W. 52.07 cm; H. 86.36 cm; D. 48.26 cm;
Condition Fair. Overall wear and color variation, scrapes, crackles and minor losses on the doors, losses of interior paper lining, heavy patina on all hardware, the rope is worn and faded, slight concave on the top. Older restoration visible in some spots.
Creation Date 17-18th century
Description Served as a traveling luggage carried like a backpack for the high priest, this rare chest is known as 笈 in Kanji(おい.きゅう in Japanese). In China the carrier case is also know as Ji (笈), traditionally used by the traveling scholars or monks in ancient time to carry their belongings such as books, clothes, and stationary. The piece on offer here is of Japanese origin and dated to Edo period (circa 17-18th century). It was likely reserved for the use of a high-rank priest to carry the Buddhism scripts due to its luxurious and high quality. The wood frame takes the shape of a pagoda with carved bamboo design that features upturned corner cornices and slightly sprayed legs. The back and the side were made of woven bamboo with lacquered interior paper lining, much of which has now degraded. This design allows the piece to be light weight, water resistant but breathable. The facade features a small upper and a large lower compartment with doors covered in lacquered paper painted with gilt mons and a dragon like form among floral pattern (in a rather abstract fashion). Along the chest, holes were placed with hardware lining. These are where the rope was threaded for the traveler's to carry it on his shoulder. The shelf in the lower compartment is collapsible, making the piece practical for storage function.
A marvelous piece, it has been largely preserved in its intact form and mostly original condition. A very worn green silk rope is also present, but it is likely a later replacement.
Styles / Movements Asian, Pilgrim, Traditional
Incollect Reference Number 378008
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