Mingeiarts Traditional Kokeshi Dolls © Mingeiarts Traditional Kokeshi Dolls ©

Vintage Traditional Kokeshi Dolls

The world is drawn to the beauty and simplicity of these "Wooden Treasures of Japan" © (2005). The original, Traditional Kokeshi was created as early as 1600 to the 1800s, by the members of eleven families,(Hijiroi, Kijiyama, Nakanosowa, Nambu, Narugo, Tougatta, Tsuchiyu, Tsugaru, Yajirou, Yamagata-Sakunami and Zao) in the Northern Tohoku region of Japan. Each family developed a specific style of a doll named after the village or onsen, and having different graphic patterns, face and hair details, and silhouettes all within a spherical head, and long torso, with no arms or legs. Each family required that their design could "never be changed throughout history," for their form was considered the result of a master's craft with a family motif to be honored. This prompted the "birth" of the Sosaku movement, which allowed for more creative liberties on the part of the contemporary artist/carver.