A lightly stained wood netsuke depicting a tengu no tamago by Hoshunsai Masayuki. The tengu seems very pleased to be getting free from the confines of its egg, the pleasure evident in his cheerful expression. I’m particularly fond of the eyes, which really convey the tengu’s delight. The top is covered with leaves and broken shell along with one half-freed wing. To the underside, one claw has pierced the shell just about to break a chunk off. The himotoshi is formed by one large rimmed oval and a small circular hole.
Signed, Masayuki with a kao
For a similar example in ivory, see Sydney Moss, ‘Kokusai the Genius’, vol. III, pp. 84–85.
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