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Tanaka Kiyotoshi (清壽) Tsuba


Kurikata
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Hi, let me submit to your sagacity this tsuba I recently adquired  and signed Kiyotoshi - 清壽.

 

I didn' find a tosogu with this exact signature as Tanaka Kiyotoshi used to sign many ways .

 

Do you think it is gimei ?

 

Thank you

20210626_142635.jpg

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Brian , you tease me ! isn't it an owl ?

 

I have found on web site:

In Japan, owls bring luck and offer protection from suffering.

The reason can be found in the Japanese name for owl, Fukuro フクロウ (梟), which can be written in different sets of characters: One with the meaning of luck (福 fuku, luck; 来ku, to come; 郎 ro suffix used in boys' names), and the other as protection from hardship (不 fu, no, 苦労 kurou suffering/hardship).

Through this play on words, owls have attained different attributions and have become popular as engimono (縁起物) (Japanese for lucky charms). Some people believe that the different colours and shapes of owls have different influences on the type of power and luck. 

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Bruno,

I can't comment on the signature as I'm not expert enough.  But I tend to think that if a tsuba has a unique design, which this one has, then its likely to have be genuine.  Forgers tend to make copies.  It really is a lovely design.  I've never seen one like it.  The owl on the front seems to be in the wild and free as it sits on a branch of a tree.  However, the owl on the back is sitting on a man made perch.  I suppose it is an owl rather than a hawk, which would be more likely to be kept as a pet or for hunting?

 

Regards, John

 

 

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I really like the tsuba! The sort of comic quality of the owl juxtaposed with the beautiful realistic outline of the cloud obscured moon just really makes it for me. Thanks for posting this!

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Dear Bruno,

 

Nice Tsuba!  Haynes has four artists signing with these kanji, but your mei and kakihan only fit two of them: Tanaka Kiyotoshi and his student Bunjiro Kiyotoshi.  Haynes says that many of Bunjiro's works are passed for that of his teacher.  Looks like the sekegane on yours are a replacement (a little too coarse for this school).  Here's a very similar tsuba from Tetsugundo.com for comparison.  Really love the moon on yours!

 

BTW - In ancient Japan, Owls were disfavored because the Japanese said that the young often eat the parents making them very disloyal.  However, this attitude changed in the last couple of hundred years, so Owls have become more favorable on more recent works of art.

 

 

Screen Shot 2021-06-26 at 12.43.59 PM.png

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42 minutes ago, Tanto54 said:

George,

 

Actually the Kiyotoshi piece you posted the scan of is published in older books (its in tosogu classroom book, etc) w/o those sekigane, so they are a later addition/re-addition. I've been told by a nameless restorer that nobody knows how the Touryuusai guys did the fru-fru surface on their large sekigane, so whoever added them didn't even try.


And... the piece is actually a lot better than it looks in the scans:
 

kiyotoshi_small.thumb.jpg.d869c470af4ac92675abeb70c3b8f5a7.jpg

 

On the kiyotoshi piece Bruno put up..  First off, it seems like a number of the tanaka guys had quite a variety of ways that they signed, and some of the variations aren't shown in the books, so you sometimes have to look across several mei to see all the kanji.  That said,  I'd buy that it was done by some Touryuusai school guy, but the work doesn't seem over-the-top enough to be by Kiyotoshi (though I'm sure he didn't do his "usual" level of work all the time/maybe let a student piece slide, etc), so ymmv on that.  But back to the mei - To my eye, the kao acutally looks Real Close, but the kiyo and toshi characters seem slightly different (some strokes missing, etc) from the published examples (at least from the examples in the mei book Markus xlated, I didn't pull out Wakayama and compare to those).  Blessing it or calling it gimei is above my pay grade though...

 

Good Luck,

rkg

(Richard George)

 

 

 

 

Quote

 


 

Dear Bruno,

 

Nice Tsuba!  Haynes has four artists signing with these kanji, but your mei and kakihan only fit two of them: Tanaka Kiyotoshi and his student Bunjiro Kiyotoshi.  Haynes says that many of Bunjiro's works are passed for that of his teacher.  Looks like the sekegane on yours are a replacement (a little too coarse for this school).  Here's a very similar tsuba from Tetsugundo.com for comparison.

 

 

 

 

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Thanks Richard!  I might have been unclear, but I posted that tsuba for comparison of the owl, workmanship and mei (not the sekigane... but I see how you could take my text that way...).

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