Vintage Japanese Carved Eight Monkeys Wood Kiseru Pipe Case Tonkotsu Ojime Sagemono
Vintage Japanese Carved Keyaki Wood Kiseru Sagemono
Eight Monkeys Set
Kiseruzutsu, Ojimi, and Tonkotsu
Sig: Nichisho, Circa: Showa, early 1900s'
Pipe Case: H 6.75 in. (17cm), Ojimi: H 1 in. (2.5cm)
Tobacco Jug: H 2.5 in. (6.3cm), W 2.25 in. (5.7cm)
Condition: very good!
This Beautiful Showa period sagemono set depicts a theme of eight monkeys. Noticeably a Miseru "See No Evil Monkey" as an ojimi, with a scene of three monkeys playing around a banyan tree on the Kiseru pipe case, and hovering over the tonkotsu tobacco wood pouch are four more monkeys with coral inlaid eyes. The design of the set is tactile in round, complete with bold strokes and fine lines, and beautifully polished to a shine, with a natural Japanese elm reddish wood tone. There is a couple of burn marks on the sagemono set, though it has no cracks or losses.
The Japanese pipe case was used along with a tobacco box or pouch. It was made to hold the kiseru, a long-stemmed and tiny bowl pipe that holds no more than three-puffs of tobacco. The pipe case is called "tsutsu" in common language. Similar to the inro, it is suspended by the same combination of silk cord and ojime. Concurrent with netsuke, tsutsu were in use during the Tokugawa, until Meiji and early Showa period. At first they were favored by common peasants, then gradually increasing numbers of samurai and aristocrats began to wear the elegantly crafted tsutsu, thus indirectly contributed to the diminishing use of netsuke.