|Kokeshi doll and action figure.|
The lathing is top notch, and while the painting is hand done and somewhat primitive (in a folk-art style) it is nonetheless charming, making this kokeshi a welcome addition to our collection. It is unvarnished, and when trying to straighten the head a bit of red paint came off on my hand. As for features, it has fully opened alert eyes rather than the usual crescent shape. This eye style is called niju mabuta (二重まぶた), translated as "an eyelid with a fold." The nose is also fully drawn, which in the world of kokeshis is called a maruhana or marubana (丸鼻), meaning "round nose." The mouth is almost non-existent. Overall, it's an interesting face that seems to be expressing...? Hard to say. Anyway, based on our kokeshi reference book the flowers are called hishigiku (菱菊), apparently a kind of chrysanthemum. The significance of the ringed pattern around the neck and torso area is unknown. The artist's family name is Abe, his first name is (possibly) Tsunekichi, and he was 81 years old when he finished it. We know this information because Mr. Abe signed the kokeshi on the back, included his age. 81 years old! Most kokeshi makers sign the bottom, so the back signature seems quite unique.
|The kokeshi maker's signature and age.|