Vintage Traditional Kokeshi

Vintage Traditional Yajirou JIngasa Kokeshi by Hoshi Hiroaki

$55.00

b.Late, 1970s

Descriptive qualities& condition:

Dimensions: 5-3/4”h

Yajirou dolls are some of the most brightly painted of the traditional family set. Utilizing a veritable rainbow of colors, from the usual red and black to blue and purple, they are available in probably the widest range of shapes. With the exception of the face, the body is fully hand-painted with wide horizontal stripes. It has an extremely expressive face and head with a conical hat similar to the JIngasa shaped hat worn by samurai during ceremonial or ritualistic occasions and sometimes worn when traveling. It has double eyelids, a data-shaped nose, and emphasized red cheeks. The face is framed with side hair fringes and red chrysanthemum petals perturbing out from the sides. This doll is made of cherry wood and signed on the bottom.

Condition: Excellent, original condition, with no fading or loss of color and consistent with age and standards of collectible Folk Art. All details are perfect and as crafted.

NOTE: There is no other biographical information published on the artist other than he was born in 1953 and studying under the Master: Honda, Kametoshi was born in 1919.


Japanese Traditional Kokeshi | Yajirou-Kei (Family)

Prefecture: Miyagi

Origin:

The creators of these dolls hail from the small farming village of Yajirou-machi near Kamasaki Onsen in Miyagi Prefecture, once a farming village between two, tall mountains. The kiji-shi (woodworkers), divided their time between farming and wood-craft. Those who made kokeshi in their spare time sent their wives to the nearby Kamasaki Onsen to sell their work to tourist shops and through onsens.

Collector's note – characteristics/painting style:

The majority of this style has distinct waists and wider bases, making them very stable. Yajirou dolls are some of the most brightly painted of the traditional family set. Utilizing a veritable rainbow of colours, from the usual red and black to green, yellow, and even blue and purple, they are available in probably the widest range of shapes. The upper body usually has a hand-painted collar with horizontal stripes encircling the body, as in the Rokoru moyo style, and vertical stripes running below the waist to the base of the doll. However, Yajirou dolls can also be found with a series of chrysanthemum petals running down the front of the body, or a branch of plum blossoms as the only decoration. Some, also have a painted beret-like feature or a bun on their heads, similarly painted with a red center spot. Less common are Yajirou that have conical hats known as Suge-Gasa. Typically seen is one lid or double eyelids, cat or pick shaped nose. Yajirou kokeshi have been made from cherry wood, camellia, and maple, but the preferred wood is white dogwood, (mazuki).

NOTE: Both Yajirou ad Togutta dolls are sometimes created with loose rings circling the waists. Literally carved from the same wood as the body, a very meticulous method! This treatment is referred to as 'Yamiyo' style kokeshi. It is also seen on Tsuchiyu dolls, though very rarely.

Notable artists:

Satou Denki, b. 1909
Satou Dennai, Master
Ishikawa Tokujiro, b. 1915
Niiyama Fukutaro, Master
Sato Tatsuro, b. 1928
Sato Imasaburo, Master
Hamatsu Heizaburo, b. 1933
Niiyama Sanai, MasterYajirou
Niiyama Yoshinori, b. 1960
Niiyama Yoshitaro, Grand Master