Vintage Sosaku Kokeshi entitled: Chigo Zakura, (Cherry Blossom Child), by Masao Watanabe

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Dimensions: 12-0”h

This doll was his most famous entitled, ‘Chigo Zakura’, (Cherry Blossom Child), which won the Prime Minister’s Award, and was presented to the Beatles in 1965, after their appearance in Japan with Sir Joseph Lockwood, Chairman of EMI Record Distributors, England.

He is famous for not only minimally turned and carving beautiful woods, but as with this doll is respected for his use of variegated lacquer used to add another dimension to this Spring representation of the most famous and loved Cherry Blossom season. The eyes of this doll are typically looking downward in respect with just a hint of bangs peeping out of the  tight head covering. The doll has Watanabe-san’s stamp and signed on the bottom.

Condition: Very good and in original condition. Light woods seem to slightly stain more from dampness, as shown on the lower chin of this doll. There are just a few imperfections on the body brought about by aging which does not distract from the appreciation of the doll and workmanship.

NOTE: Masao Watanabe | 1917-2007 (89) 

Born in Fukushima, Watanabe-san studied under Traditional Yajirou Master Sato, Tatsuo of Miyagi Prefecture. After relocation to America, Masao Watanabe, (Nisei male), was incarcerated Incarcerated at the Puyallup Assembly Center, Washington, and transferred to the Minidoka internment camp, Idaho during World War II.  Arguably, the most popular and prolific of the 20th/c Sosaku Kokeshi artists, he began his craft in the early 1950s. A multiple award winner in Kokeshi competitions around the world, his works are permanently exhibited at the Nuremberg Toy Museum in Germany.