12 November 1996
A MASSIVE KUNITOMO MATCH LOCK CANNON
Signed Kunitomo ju Kyubei, circa 1800
The circular iron barrel with octagonal muzzle decorated in gold and silver inlays with seigai-ha patterns, Fudo Myo-o, Kannon and two deities amid clouds, and large Tokugawa mon, wood stock with brass fittings engraved with scrolling foliage, iron spring
Overall 95.7cm., barrel length 67.2cm., breech, 9cm., muzzle, 7.5cm.
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Illustrated in Yamato, Fudo Was Musashi murdered? (New York,: Zensho Communications Inc.), plate 53.
The gun was manufactured in Kunitomo village in Choshu province. The two deities and Kannon were associated with Fudo in the 17th Century. Both Kannon and Fudo are associated with waterfalls and often depicted together.
The designer and decorator shows us around his Santa Monica HQ, and enthuses over the forthcoming Rooms as Portraits auctions in London and New York
Chinese Works of Art specialist Olivia Hamilton reckons this pair of superb sculptures — around 1,300 years old — are ‘the finest I've seen come up for sale‘