A mask representing a tengu who protects others from evil spirits and demons. The oldest form of beshimi mask, characteristically the mouth is firmly clenched and metallic gold eyes appear to pop out of the face.
While the beshimi has an expression of inner determination, it also has a comical aspect: if beshimi were to unclamp its teeth, it would break into a smile. Beshimi's tense expression creates deep wrinkles on the forehead and forces both ends of the eyebrows to curl upward. Flattened nostrils enlarge the end of the nose. Used for tengu roles in Kurama Tengu, Zegai, Kuruma z, Dairokuten, and Daie, where it is worn under a shaka mask and therefore called shaka shita. First created by the thirteenth carver Shakazuru Yoshinari.
A good standard obeshimi mask is owned by the Mitsui family, Tokyo, and a fine early Muromachi example with smaller eyeballs and rounder face belongs to Nara Zuihiko Shrine. Small damage to the upper left of the mask: a small crack and loss of bronze. To my knowledge these would have originally come with a small cotton twine in their pupils to hang them on the wall... More often than not these strings are missing.This one has a newer, replacement string. A standard push-pin pushed into drywall allows these to easily hang on the wall snug and flat. Measures 5.0 x 4.0 cms. The item "Antique, Fine Details, Japanese/Japan Bronze, Netsuke Mask (Mennetsuke) Obeshimi" is in sale since Wednesday, February 6, 2019. This item is in the category "Antiques\Asian Antiques\Japan\Netsuke".
The seller is "maskmonger" and is located in Freeport, Maine. This item can be shipped worldwide.