Antique Japanese Lacquer Hand Painted Box Men in Long Robes in Garden Setting
Description: This is a beautiful and rather large lacquer box from Japan. The box, which appears to be made of Paper Mache (based on what we see within a small break along the edge of the base of the box) is black on the outside and inside. The box has a hinged lid and a lock with an escutcheon on the outside of the front where a key would fit. The box is decorated on all four exterior sides and the top of the lid. The decoration which is in the usual gold coloring shows men standing and sitting in a garden setting dressed in long robes. The men are in various poses such as holding an umbrella, holding a fan, pointing, sitting, standing walking, and looking at each other. The garden setting depicts plants, trees, garden buildings, tables, and seats. The drawing is colored in gold with the heads and hands of the men on top of the lid being colored in a light flesh tone. A beautiful rendition, which we believe is probably a known Japanese story, but is truly out of our area of expertise. This represents an estate find and we are listing it as found. The box comes with a key which fits in the keyhole but unfortunately, we were unable to make it work. We are including the key in the sale since we are selling the piece as found. The inside of the box is colored in black and is undecorated. In addition, the bottom of the box is undecorated and colored in black. Please carefully review the photos as they are part and parcel of our description.
Date: Uncertain but most likely late 1800s or very early 1900s.
Origin: Purchased at an estate auction in Southeastern Pennsylvania.
Size: The box measures ~6" by ~4" and is ~3" high when closed. The box weighs slightly over 11 ounces.
Distinguishing Characteristics - Most Interesting About The Piece: A very beautiful and well done design with beautiful vivid colors. Golden coloring makes this box a very good addition to your collection of Lacquer Boxes.
Condition: The box is in generally good condition. The box is clean and in its original used condition. The box has no cracks, repairs, or hairlines. It is all original with no modification. The exterior surface has general crazing to the lacquering and there are minor losses to the lacquering, colors and the surface finish. The box has a small break at the edge of the base near back left corner of the base where you can see that it is made of Paper Mache as opposed to being made of wood. The bottom of the box shows scratches and wear resulting from rubbing and being moved on surfaces. The art work is mostly intact, beautiful, well executed, and in good condition with minimum losses and fading. The interior is clean with minimum soiling and losses to the coloring of the surface. The box comes with a key which fits in the keyhole but unfortunately, we were unable to make it work. We are including the key in the sale since we are selling the piece as found. Other than that, this is a beautiful and very interesting box worthy of a spot in your collection. Please view the photos for additional condition information.
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