Here is an important Japanese classic yusen shippo (with standard wire) enamel cloisonné covered box signed by an early Japanese artist, Masatoku. The box is worked with a group of flowering plants in various shades of muted colored enamels including blue, pink, red, and white enamels. The leaves are worked in various shades of aqua and light green enamel. The background is worked with a matte finish black enamel and it is in superb antique condition considering how old it is. The art name, Masatoku, is inset in wire on the bottom base of the box.
Masatoku is the most likely reading with alternative readings including Seitoku or Shotoku (possibly other readings as well). I recall when I first acquired this box several years ago and noting how the matte enamel finish, the muted enameling and harsh depiction of the flowers clearly indicated a very early piece; dating as early as the Early Period (1836 - 1865) or Middle Period (1865 - 1888). I had not previously seen any early Japanese work that was marked other than the spurious Ming dynasty mark or the rarely seen Akibo or Fuku mark.To see this artist mark on such an early work was very exciting as it has not been seen in another piece over 30+ years of focused collecting and research. I have taken many images of this box as part of my data colection and docmentation process as it represents a very rare example of an early Japanese work signed by the artist. I will include this artist signature in a future edition of my reference book. The length of this box is approximately 4.5 inches. The width of this box isapproximately 3.0 inches.
The height of the box is approximately 1.5 inches. Overall, a rare example of an early Japanese cloisonné enamel box in clean and outstanding condition, considering its age that shows the rather crude depictions and enamel inclusions that were gradually overcome by the innovative and skilled artisans.
Due to the fragile nature of Japanese cloisonné enamels, this box will be double boxed and packed with tremendous care. The item "Important Early Japanese Cloisonne Enamel Box Signed by Masatoku" is in sale since Sunday, August 16, 2020. This item is in the category "Antiques\Asian Antiques\Japan\Vases". The seller is "gyassociates" and is located in Carlsbad, California.
This item can be shipped to United States.