Japanese Story Tellers

Antique Japanese Pottery Story Teller Figurines | Hakuin & Otafuku

$225.00

Age:1930s

Descriptive qualities& condition:

Dimensions: Otafuku- 5-1/4”h x 4-0”w x 5 -3/4”d; Hakuin - 6-1/2”h x 5-0”w x 3-3/4”d
Offered are two hand-formed, exceptionally detailed and glazed pottery figures. The male figure is of Hakuin and is paired with his companion, offering Otafuku, an aging courtesan a peach, ( a symbol of wisdom). It is said that he regularly shared his teaching, thoughts, songs and stories, and Otafuku smiling, with a dog on her knee. This pair touches the soul of a collector for it offers an irresistible and universal message of sharing. 
Antique Condition: Extremely beautifully glazed pottery figures in excellent condition: no chips or missing elements or repairs. “As is” and retains the original craft/workmanship. Any discoloration, chipping/cracking, surface wear or structural damage noted. 
NOTE: Hakuin, was Zen Buddhist Monk/Abbot/Artist/Poet, (1769), and known for his artistry, which he felt brought him enlightenment and often seen with Otafuku (also known as Okame), in many of his representations. Hakuin was known as a messenger to teach the precepts of Zen. Hakuin likened Otafuku to an incarnation of Kannon, the Bodhisattva of compassion. Otafuku remains one of Japan’s least analyzed yet beguiling figures. She is every woman, a source of generosity, a fertility symbol; her essence is goodwill, affirmation and delight, and she is thought to bestow pleasure, success and well-being, and to grant wishes.
As an artist/poet, Hakuin, the teacher was profoundly influential. More than one thousand of Hakuin's works survive and was been an inspiration for many later Zen artists, including Sengai and the Zen poet Ryokan. Here is an example of his statements associated with this sculptural pair:
As for Otafuku, although her nose is flat
And her eyelids are puffy, she is a kind woman.
No matter what we call her,
She has been taking good care of men -
Otafuku suddenly appears to guide you;
Otafuku will preach the Buddhist truths.