Japanese Creative Kokeshi entitled: “Spirit of Wheat | Seishin No Komugi” by Kishi Sadao (1932-1998)

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Dimensions: 19-1/4”h

This is the largest version of this Kokeshi, a 1960 award-winning design, celebrating the Wheat Festival in Korobe Gorge. Wheat, when harvested, is golden brown, and so is appropriately represented as the central motif of this beautifully proportioned doll. 

Shown is a lathe-turned doll with an undulating form defining the various part of the body. The head shows its attachment to the body by a wonderfully formed neckline while the garment shows negative space between each section. The Kimono motif is beautifully executed by a burning technique called, ‘Shou sugi ban’, that creates the three-dimensional qualities of the garment, which in this case is the natural wheat prior to harvest. The waist is specifically identified by a three-dimensional ring of different wood to bring attention to this detail. The face is extremely simple incorporating angled eyes and a suggestion of a nose and lips. The top of the head shows a ‘Mage’, in which the hair is stacked in a complex manner with a suggestion of hair falling on both sides of the face. The doll is both signed in the script by the artist as well as has his red impressed stamp on the bottom.

Condition: Excellent, perfect condition and commensurate with age with no fading of the painted motif. Wonderful workmanship, turning, and painted features. This doll, as with the other pieces we have sold, was purchased from the artist’s studio prior to his death.

NOTE: Born in Maebashi, Gunma Prefecture, Kishi- san produced hundreds of Creative Kokeshi dolls until his passing. During his career, he received numerous awards, winning the Prime Minister’s Award and the Minister of Economy, Trade, and Industry Award (METI). He is credited with being one of the major influences of the ‘Sosaku Kokeshi Movement’, gaining recognition for the dolls as a popular and valid art form.