What's new

Welcome to Japan Reference (JREF) - the community for all Things Japanese.

Join Today! It is fast, simple, and FREE!

Learn Japanese with JapanesePod101.com

Signature on Bronze Okimono

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Hello, could someone please help me deciphering the signature on a small Meiji period bronze okimono of Fukurokuju?
Thank you very much in advance,
Mat
Mat
F2.jpg
F1.jpg
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
15 Mar 2002
Messages
16,455
Reaction score
2,254
That first one is beyond me. Probably 土偏 but could possibly be 草冠 (though I doubt it). The second one is easy enough, 南.
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Thank you very much for your help, Mike Cash! Is there any chance the first one cluld be 後 ?? I could be easily totally wrong, as I cannot read Kanji at all, of course...
Mat
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Is there any chance the first one cluld be 後 ??
Please forget that, I am wrong for sure... Would any of the two possibilities you gave me make sense as a name in combination with the second kanji?
Mat
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
15 Mar 2002
Messages
16,455
Reaction score
2,254
Please forget that, I am wrong for sure... Would any of the two possibilities you gave me make sense as a name in combination with the second kanji?
Mat

No, they wouldn't. Those were only names of common *parts* of kanji used for classification and looking up ksnji. I only mentioned them to provide help or a clue to anyone else who may be trying to read it. I'm thoroughly bake baffled by the first one.
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Ah, I understand... Thank you again for your efforts! :)
Mat
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
I add another photo of the signature with different light - maybe it is easier to recognize now?
Mat
F3.jpg
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Thank you bURL, sorry for my ignorance, would that be a name?
Mat
 

Toritoribe

松葉解禁
Moderator
Joined
22 Feb 2008
Messages
17,128
Reaction score
3,344
Could it be 博南 ?
Most likely not, because of the length of the vertical stroke of the radical/hen (the left half of the kanji), the position of the dot, and the lack of the vertical strokes in tsukuri (the right half of the kanji).
 

Majestic

先輩
Joined
12 Oct 2013
Messages
2,190
Reaction score
1,205
Close, but too far to be a match. It could be someone trying to copy Jonan (and doing a poor job).
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Just for update, I have shown the piece to two experts on Meiji period bronzes, and both read the signature as "城南", without me having suggested this reading to them. It guess that it is not easy to inscribe kanji with a chisel in bronze, so maybe that is why it is so difficult to decipher the signature...
Mat
 

Majestic

先輩
Joined
12 Oct 2013
Messages
2,190
Reaction score
1,205
You got two Meiji bronze experts lined up and you are coming here for advice?? ;)
Just busting yer balls Mat. I wouldn't think the difficulty of carving/engraving bronze has anything to do with it, but I'm not a bronze artist, so maybe there is something to that. 城 looks close, but there are some problems with it, not the least of which it is missing some crucial strokes, and the positions of some of the lines are so distorted as to be unrecognizable as 城. When put side-by-side you can see the differences. If this were a sword, you would have to say that one of them is a fake. But I defer to the experts. I would be interested in what they have to say about those differences.
 

Attachments

  • 城南.jpg
    城南.jpg
    73.1 KB · Views: 74

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Look, I came here for help after having posted this in other specialized forums, but without getting any answers (which came yesterday in the end). First I posted this on an Asian Arts Forum, but then without the Bonhams link . One person there has a lot of experience with bronze okimono. He stated the mei reads Jonan, but places the okimono stylistically a bit later, Taisho to early Showa. He concludes that my sculptor and the Meiji Jonan are likely not the same person. The other person was actually from a Japanese sword forum, and he also read it as Jonan, not commenting on the figure itself. I don't want to hide that I today I got a third opinion, from a specialized Kyoto based antiques dealer I contacted. He reads the signature as " 堆南" So, everything is a bit confusing.....
Mat

PS: Just for fun, another mei for Jonan that I found, I wonder how they deciphered this one: A Bronze Sculpture of Monkeys Christie’s Japanese Craftsmanship: Art of the Meiji Period
 
Last edited:

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
15 Mar 2002
Messages
16,455
Reaction score
2,254
Is it possible that someone cast a copy from an original and faked the signature? The first kanji is so off that it looks like something somebody mimicking kanji would write.
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Of course that would be possible, but I see nothing that would make me think of it, despite the signature...
 

Mike Cash

骨も命も皆此の土地に埋めよう
Joined
15 Mar 2002
Messages
16,455
Reaction score
2,254

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
One thing I forgot to say is that the person on the Asian Arts Forum mentioned that it is written in cursive script...
 

Toritoribe

松葉解禁
Moderator
Joined
22 Feb 2008
Messages
17,128
Reaction score
3,344
an example of 城南 in cursive script.
34g20zt.jpg


It might not be impossible to interpret so, but the point is whether the artist really used this type of signature or not.
 

Majestic

先輩
Joined
12 Oct 2013
Messages
2,190
Reaction score
1,205
Wow, that cursive 城 looks like a close match indeed. I have to surrender this battle - you've done well with tracking this down and Toritoribe-san's sample convinced me. 城南 Jōnan it is. (Whether it is a counterfeit or not I leave to the experts). In the sword world, where I have some interest/experience, it would be rare to see a smith who used such different styles. But bronze artists may be different.
Anyway, (yet another) good exercise in humility for me. Good detective work from Mat and Toritoribe-san, too.
 

MatW

後輩
Joined
26 Feb 2016
Messages
14
Reaction score
0
Thank you Toritobe, yes, that really looks close to the mei on the okimono! Majestic, thank you too, and if I will ever come to a conclusion if this piece was made by the Meiji Jonan or by someone else, I will post it here...
Mat
 
Top Bottom