Netsuke - Elephant ivory - Seated Sen-nin - Japan - Meiji period (1868-1912)

Netsuke - Elephant ivory - Seated Sen-nin - Japan - Meiji period (1868-1912)
Good condition, see description - 5.2×2.5×3.7 cm


Sen-nin are ascetics considered by oriental popular superstition as demi-gods gifted with magical and supernatural powers of all kinds.

Amongst these extraordinary powers, obtained through long and persisting meditation and the use of some magical recipies, is the ability to escape the law of death and transmigration of souls for a period of 100 000 years.

As a consequence a perfect sen-nin is almost an immortal gifted specifically with the following privileges or spiritual capacities : ability to see and hear everything, to know everything past, present and future.

On top, having reached through their practice the ability to dematerailize their body, these extraordinary characters have become able to transport themselves anywhere they wish through space.

The sen-nin represented by this netsuke, characterized by his bent staff, the mugwort leaves on his shoulder and around his waist, the double gourd attached to the staff, is seated on a rock.

There is no actual characteristic feature that would enable us to recognize a specific Sen-nin. but the bent staff and the facial expression, eyes semi-closed and mouth open could be elements pointing towards Tek-kaï sen-nin.

Tek-kaï was indeed able to blow his mind out of himself and into space. The netsuke is not signed and the right foot is an ancient restoration subsequent to an accidental fracture of the ivory.


Late 19th century - C.1890


Good condition apart the right foot repair

please check pictures for global condition


French private collection.




35 gr






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Pre-convention ivory specimen.

Complies with CE Regulation 338-97 of 09 December 1996.

Specimen prior to June 1, 1947. Submitted according to the decree of May 4, 2017 to a prior declaration provided for in Article L. 412-1 code environment.

A physical expertise of the piece will be realized by an independent expert confirming that the piece was realized before 1947 and is well of the announced period.

This document will be given to the buyer after purchase, the document price is 50 euro and is included in the delivery costs.

For an exit of the EU, a CITES of re-export will be necessary, this one being at the charge of the future purchaser. The issuance of such a document is not automatic

The signature is deciphered for information only and regarding my study of the piece and my global knowledge.

Buyers are responsable for import regulation and restrictions of their own country

Lot details
Elephant ivory
Meiji period (1868-1912)
Region/ Country of origin
Artist/ Maker
Title of artwork
Seated Sen-nin
Good condition, see description
5.2×2.5×3.7 cm
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