Japanese Cat sculpture

Made of bonded bronze

Hand-patinated to reflect the original finish.

Height 5 in., width 7 in., depth 4 1/4 in.

Item No.

Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts

19th Century Art

This Item is an Identical Museum Reproduction

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Restrictive trade policies during the 17th century isolated Japan from foreign influence for 230 years, ushering in a period of great peace in which art, particularly miniature art, flourished and developed national characteristics. Subjects varied widely, including deities, legendary heroes, and animals. With the opening of Japan to foreign trade in the 19th century, Japanese miniature sculpture immediately captured the attention of Western collectors. In some provincial Japanese legends, long-tailed or two-tailed cats are believed to have supernatural powers, including the ability to bewitch human beings. Japanese sailors often brought cats aboard ships because they were thought to keep away the spirits of the deep. The Museum's Japanese Cat is reproduced from an original sculpture by an unknown Japanese artist from the late 1800s. Produced in cooperation with the Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts.
Made of bonded bronze (cold cast). "Cold-Cast" bronze (also referred to as "bonded bronze") is a product made from resin mixed/blended with 100% pure bronze powder to give it the appearance of the true bronze. It looks just as a "lost wax" bronze object does - both are bronzes. The cost for making a "lost wax" bronze statue is much greater than that of a "cold-cast" bronze statue. A sculpture made of "lost wax" bronze would be several times more expensive then made in cold cast bronze. Yet in either of the above materials, the casts (the final product made out of the mold) are made using the same rubber mold; which is taken from the original sculpture. Thus, the final result is exactly the same bronze sculpture, only made in a different bronze material. With the cold cast we still achieve the same bronze effect at much lower cost and thus is more affordable.
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