Netsuke of Flying Goose over Flowers

Period: Edo (1615–1868) or Meiji period (1868–1912)

Date: 19th century

Culture: Japan

Medium: Ivory, decorated with bird in shakudo and flowers in mother-of-pearl

Dimensions: H. 5/8 in. (1.6 cm); Diam. 1 11/16 in. (4.3 cm)

Classification: Netsuke

Credit Line: Gift of Mrs. Russell Sage, 1910

Accession Number: 10.211.1276


On the obverse of this manju-shaped netsuke, a goose of gold and copper alloy hovers over chrysanthemums and other autumn grasses of inlaid mother-of-pearl and tortoiseshell. On the reverse, similar materials are arranged to render a swallow as it gazes above at hanging wisteria. Seasonal motifs are a favored theme in Japanese art.