Vintage Sosaku Kokeshi entitled: “On'nanoko | Girl” by Murakami, Ken-ichi (1929-1991)

Sale price$215.00 Regular price$285.00
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Dimensions: 8-1/2” h

Murakami was a carver of Kokeshi born in Yamagata Prefecture. His Kokeshi is all about celebrating the color and patterns/graining of natural wood, with very little ornamentation and painted surfaces. Most of his decoration is made by the use of wood-burned techniques on his favorite wood, that being Enju, (Pagoda Tree). 

The innocence found in children is beautifully replicated in his lathe-turned Kokeshi through simple turning. All of his ‘child’ figures are typically shown in casual dress, (Yukata), which is customary when children bathe. Known as ‘syobuyu’, it is an easy garment to wear to and from the bath to the house. This type of dress is also very popular on Children’s Day, when all children wear the Yukata with many designs, particularly, but not emphasized here is the ‘iris’, which is not only an important flower during this celebration, but also represents purity, innocence, and the warrior spirit. Ken-ichi-san captures the innocence of youth, with a carved, simple eye treatment, a cat, or pug nose, and a tiny red mouth. The wide, carved banding of the sash is standard for this style of garment and doll. The piece has Murakami’s stamp on the bottom.  

The piece was published in Sosaku Kokeshi: Celebrating the Major Artists of the Creative Movement in 2022. For more information on this artist go to the following link:

Condition: Pristine, meaning that the piece retains its original craft/workmanship showing a wonderfully developed patina commensurate with age, which corresponds to its vintage. The doll is void of damage, cracks, or breakage. This doll meets all the collectible Japanese Sosaku Kokeshi standards by Murakami, Ken-ichi.