MEIJI PERIOD EBISU JIZAIKAGI (JAPANESE KETTLE HOOK)
Late 19th/early 20th century
12 ½” high x 12” wide x 3 ½” deep
A jizaikagi is the hook from which an iron kettle for making tea is suspended, and is found in the heart of the home above the irori or sunken hearth where a family gathers and guests are welcomed. This J-shaped hook is named after one of the Seven Gods of Luck, Ebisu, because it resembles the form of his tall hat. Ebisu is a god of wealth, fishermen and guardian of health in small children.
We love it as a work of abstract sculpture. The carving is sure and energetic, and the upward thrust of its form is quite compelling.