What are netsuke? From wikipedia:
Netsuke are miniature sculptures that were invented in 17th-century Japan to serve a practical function (the two Japanese characters ne+tsuke mean “root” and “to attach”). Traditional Japanese garments—robes called kosode and kimono—had no pockets; however, men who wore them needed a place to store their personal belongings, such as pipes, tobacco, money, seals, or medicines.
Their solution was to place such objects in containers (called sagemono) hung by cords from the robes’ sashes (obi). The containers may have been pouches or small woven baskets, but the most popular were beautifully crafted boxes (inrō), which were held shut by ojime, which were sliding beads on cords. Whatever the form of the container, the fastener that secured the cord at the top of the sash was a carved, button-like toggle called a netsuke.
Tucson’s unique museum of miniatures will exhibit Japanese netsuke and diminutive carvings from the Phoenix Art Museum, Tucson Museum of Art, UA Museum of Art, and other private collections this fall from September 24 to December 8, 2013.
Opening reception is on September 26, 5 to 7 p.m. with regular admission prices applying. The Museum is at 4455 E. Camp Lowell Drive in Tucson, opening hours are Tuesdays to Saturdays, 9 to 4 p.m., Sundays 1 to 4 p.m. See www.theminitimemachine.org.
I’ve seen beautiful netsuke over the years and they are intricate, beautifully carved pieces of wood, bone, etc. Some are certainly amazing due to their artistry. Check out this exhibit to experience some exquisite Japanese culture.
For more Japanese art shows and other events, go to our new Southern Arizona Japanese Cultural Coalition website, www.southernazjapan.org.