Unsigned – Fisherman on a giant fugu fish

A fisherman sits on the back of a giant fugu fish, appearing to scratch his neck in consternation. The fish has inflated itself to intimidate its would be captor, its tail fin curled in a swimming motion. The fisherman’s wicker basket strapped to his waist is dwarfed by the pufferfish, creating a comical cameo. It might also be seen as a parody of Kinko riding on the back of a giant carp. The fish’s eyes are inlaid in dark horn.

Unsigned netsuke of fisherman on a giant fugu fish - Rosemary Bandini
Unsigned netsuke of fisherman on a giant fugu fish - Rosemary Bandini
Unsigned netsuke of fisherman on a giant fugu fish - Rosemary Bandini
Unsigned netsuke of fisherman on a giant fugu fish - Rosemary Bandini

Osaka, circa 1860

Length: 4.5cms

Provenance: An old English collection