Stag antler otoshizutsu - Hosai

circa 1860

otoshizutsu
Stag antler otoshizutsu

A stag antler otoshizutsu applied with a metal design of an anchor that follows the natural line of the dark cancellus. A thick rope or chain hangs down behind the four-pronged hook. A small metal hook in the rope hole serves as a himotoshi.

Lazarnick (MCI p. 490-491) records a Hosai who, according to Reikichi, was extremely versatile in horn and ivory and used a variety of techniques. Only one illustration matches this signature, a kagamibuta exhibited at the William Nelson Hill Gallery of Art in Kansas, 1977. In that example the bowl is by Hosai, the plate by Yasuchika.

Merrily Baird (Symbols of Japan, Rizzoli, 2001) records that the anchor is a motif used in family crests. It is also associated with the suicide of Taira Tomomori, who used one as a weight tied to his body to before leaping from his boat following his clan’s defeat at Dannoura in 1185.

otoshizutsu
Reverse
Stag antler otoshizutsu
Detail with signature

Signed: Hosai

Length: 20.7cm

Signature Hosai
Signature Hosai