Vintage Sosaku Kokeshi Entitled, “Lovely Girl | Akai hana” by Sato Suigai


Dimensions: 18-0”h

The most unique feature of Sato-san’s dolls is the unusual but traditional hairstyle, and in this case, there is an overemphasized ‘Mage’ treatment of wrapped hair on top of the head and black bangs. The motif of this doll, being small, are grey and black bamboo leaves, disbursed throughout the body, with a sumi-e’ type of execution, symbolizing prosperity, purity, and innocence. The base wood is dogwood, (mizuki), and is left natural with a contrasting magnolia, (Mokuren), used to define the Obi. Her face is very serene as she looks downward, with a faint indication of eyebrows, nose and pink/red lips. The piece has a clean and simplified overall form. The doll is finished with a natural colored candle wax, (Rosoku no ro). The doll has the artist’s stamp and is signed on the bottom.

Condition: Excellent, original condition, with no fading or loss of color and consistent with age. The piece meets all the standards of collectible Folk Art. 

NOTE: Sato Suigai, a painter of artistic works, began Kokeshi making in 1948, for which his dolls have won many awards, including the Prime Minister’s Award in 1966. In 1970, Sato-san’s artistry was recognized by Japan’s Imperial Family, Crown Prince Akihito, (Now Emperor Akihito), the Minister of Economy and Trade, and the Minister of Agriculture and Forestry.