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Netsuke Artist Biography - Tomo-tada

Izumiya Tomo-tada (also Tomotada, Shichi-emon) was a noted carver of netsuke, and is considered by some to be one of the most important artists in the history of netsuke. He worked in Kyoto and Edo (now Tokyo); he developed the Tomo-tada style of 'Kyoto school' carving. He was famous for bull ivory netsuke and his well-executed oxen. Due to the exquisite nature and high standard of his works, Tomo-tada was worried about imitations of his work within his lifetime - a high compliment for any netsukei. Tomo-tada was immensely celebrated in his own time, widely admired for his works depicting animals, and is one of only 54 netsukeshi noted in the Soken Kisho, an 18th century record which describes him as carving animals and figures. Tomo-tada died in 1781.

For further information, see Bernie Hurtig: "The Tomotada Story", Jnl Intl Netsuke Society, Vol 2, #2 (Fall, 1974), pp 19-25; and Anne Hull Grundy: "Tomotada and Okatomo, in Relation to the Kyoto School of Netsuke Carvers," The Antique Collector, Part 1, June, 1963, pp 107-113.

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