View 1 of Lot 62. A FINE LACQUER DISPLAY CABINET WITH INSCRIPTION NANA-SEI ZOHIKO (ZOHIKO VII), MEIJI-TAISHO PERIOD, CIRCA 1910.
View 1 of Lot 62. A FINE LACQUER DISPLAY CABINET WITH INSCRIPTION NANA-SEI ZOHIKO (ZOHIKO VII), MEIJI-TAISHO PERIOD, CIRCA 1910.
62

A FINE LACQUER DISPLAY CABINET WITH INSCRIPTION NANA-SEI ZOHIKO (ZOHIKO VII), MEIJI-TAISHO PERIOD, CIRCA 1910

Estimate:

80,000 - 100,000 GBP

A FINE LACQUER DISPLAY CABINET WITH INSCRIPTION NANA-SEI ZOHIKO (ZOHIKO VII), MEIJI-TAISHO PERIOD, CIRCA 1910

A FINE LACQUER DISPLAY CABINET WITH INSCRIPTION NANA-SEI ZOHIKO (ZOHIKO VII), MEIJI-TAISHO PERIOD, CIRCA 1910

Estimate:

80,000 - 100,000 GBP

Lot sold:

81,250

GBP

THE PROPERTY OF A LONDON COLLECTOR

A FINE LACQUER DISPLAY CABINET WITH INSCRIPTION NANA-SEI ZOHIKO (ZOHIKO VII), MEIJI-TAISHO PERIOD, CIRCA 1910


with an asymmetric arrangement of sliding and hinged doors and shelves depicting chrysanthemum flowers and hedges, in gold and silver hiramaki-e, takamaki-e, hirame and kirigane on a kinji and black ground, the structure decorated with fans in gold, silver and mother-of-pearl on a black lacquer and mura-nashiji ground, applied throughout with silver mounts of pierced flower-head design, with tomobako [original wooden box]

5.5 x 37 x 95.5 cm., 29¾ x 14⅝ x 37⅝ in.

This fine and impressive cabinet was a special commission from the seventh generation of the Zohiko lacquer lineage. Another Zohiko cabinet, slightly later in date, but with a design of court dancing and Genji themes, was exhibited at the National Museum of Modern Art in Kyoto in 1998. The Zohiko lineage dates from the time of the Kyoto lacquer craftsman Nishimura Munetada (1720-1773), who acquired the nickname "elephant boy" (Zohiko) for his lacquer image of the deity Fugen (Samantabhadra) on an elephant mount. This tour de force of the lacquerer's art is the work of the seventh-generation Nishimura Hikobei. His nephew, the eighth generation, received the gold medal for his work at the Panama Pacific International Exposition of 1915.


Zohiko was inspired by the traditional Muromachi lacquer techniques utilised in the bookshelf with 'The three laughing sages' (Kokei-sansho makie-dana) from the early Edo period (early 17th century), which is now in the Tokyo National Museum, see Beatrix von Ragué, A History of Japanese Lacquerwork, p. 147, plate 114.