A superb monumental Meiji period hard wood display cabinet, by Noguchi of Yokahama, of rectangular form with three shelves which curl back under themselves like ripples to create an asymmetrical appearance, the ornate frame boldly carved with naturalistic fish including sharks and lesser fish swimming through swirling water, the cresting carved with a right whale amongst openwork foaming waves, the back panels and shelf edges with waves and water plants in low relief, the reverse inscribed in red “By H. Noguchi, at No 34, 3-chome, Hiranuma, Yokohama, Japan“.
In Japanese “H. 野口製作、平沼３丁目３４、横浜、日本, Japanese, circa 1900.
Provenance: From the Private Collection of Mr. & Mrs. Frank Eldridge of Atlanta, Georgia.
There was a furniture shop at 5-chome, Motomachi, Yokohama, owned by Noguchi Shozaburo, with the shop name Noguchi Shoten (Shop Noguchi). This location is not so far from Hiranuma, Yokohama so it is possible that H. Noguchi was related to Noguchi Shozaburo and crafted this furniture. It appears that furniture was made by craftsmen specialised in Buddhist sculpture, temple-building and ship-building as well as traditional furniture-making.
In the Motomachi area of Yokohama City there were many embassies and expat communities. Some of the furniture brought from their original countries and used by them sometimes required repairing by the furniture making craftsmen in Yokohama. Furthermore, Yokohama furniture-makers started crafting for the overseas market, exporting the furniture from the port of Yokohama, a practise which continues today.
This item is currently on display within The London Collection at Coach House Pianos, New Kings Road.
For more information regarding this item, please contact >> Wick Antiques
A Superb Monumental Meiji Period Hard Wood Display Cabinet, by Noguchi of Yokaha
Height 90 inches approx Width 65 inches Depth 21 inches