"George Lazarnick, produced a detailed study on the signatures of netsuke and inro artists, together with easily followed guidelines on how they may be read as well as illustrated notes on the calligraphic construction of the numerous Japanese characters involved.
Over a period of several years, in addition to forming a collection of fine netsuke, Mr. Lazarnick has been amassing much detailed information on their carvers, searching out fine examples of their work throughout the world and recording the signatures in a systematic fashion. He has been aided in this work by his own natural gift for photography which, together with a large amount of painstaking research and help from other collectors and Oriental art dealers, has gone towards the production of this book. As George Lazarnick mentions in his introduction, one of the most difficult and brain-taxing aspects of reading and interpreting signatures is that the carved or engraved calligraphy used by the artists does not always follow the strict kanji or printed form of the characters represented. It is in this particular area that Mr. Lazarnick provides us with a wealth of useful information, together with many clear photographs of actual signatures. The majority of these have been enlarged so that the scholar may interpret the quirks and calligraphic mannerisms used by the artists in question with greater ease. As Mr. Lazarnick points out this is not another netsuke and inro book as such. He does not delve deeply into the biographies or artists, the styles of carving that they employed, or the materials that they used. He wisely feels that most of these aspects of the field have been covered and that he would shine a new light, from a different angle on this fascinating subject." excerpt from the foreword by Neil K. Davey, London, 1976.
Published by Reed Publishers, U.S.A., USA, 1976
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