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Recommended Netsuke Books

Promenade Dans L'Art Japonais

by Alain Ducros

The book describes more than 100 Netsuke, Inro and Tobacco implements (360º pictures showing every side of the pieces). Size: 235 x 325 mm.  Full color printing.  Each volume consisting of approximately 350 pages.  Richly illustrated with over 500 color plates.  The text is both in English and French, with some Japanese annotations.  Two volumes in a slipcase.

2-volume book: $180 USD  / 140 € 

Reduced Price!  $155 USD  / 120 €.

Shipment fees are to be added, depending the country:Europe: 30 € in extra  /  USA-Canada: 60 € extra Please e-mail your order to:

Netsuke: 100 Miniature Masterpieces from Japan

by Noriko Tsuchiya

A book exploring Netsuke - the small carved toggles used to fasten a man’s sash, an integral part of Japanese costume.

Today netsuke are considered an art form in their own right and are prized by collectors around the world. They are found in a variety of forms and depict a wide range of subjects – including figures of human and legendary form, ghosts, animals, botanical subjects and masks. Skillfully worked, these miniature carvings are of great artistic value, but they also provide a window into Japanese culture and society.

This book brings together one hundred of the most beautiful and interesting netsuke from the extensive collection of the British Museum, each of which has its own special charm and story to tell. Uncovering the stories behind these netsuke and coupling them with stunning new photography, this book reveals why these tiny objects have captivated so many, the meaning they have held for those who wore them, and what they can tell us about Japanese everyday life.

Price: £14.99
Purchase Online:
INS Regular Members receive 10% Off!
Please contact to receive your discount code.

The Art and Life of Michael Birch

by Janet Birch

Limited Edition, illustrated with over 300 colour images
252 page hardback book. 300 x 290mm page size, clothbound and embossed
with French fold laminated dust jacket.

Distributed in UK & Europe by
59 St John’s Road, Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN4 9TT

North America & Rest of World $85.00
Distributed in North America & the Rest of the World by
1507 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago IL.60605

In a Nutshell: Japanese Netsuke from European Collections by Rosemary Bandini

In a Nutshell: Japanese Netsuke from European Collections


by Rosemary Bandini  [Hardcover]

A fully illustrated catalogue to accompany the loan exhibition of netsuke at the Embassy of Japan in London (April 4-May 31 2013). Many of the netsuke have not previously been shown in public and show the rich diversity of netsuke gathered by European collectors. This exhibition is being held in conjunction with the INS Convention being held in London May 10-14 2013. 114 pages. All income is for the International Netsuke Society!

Available from the following vendors:

  • Thomas Heneage Books
    42 Duke Street St James's London SW1Y 6DJ
  • Alfie Turmeau's Tobacconist
    1 White Horse Street, Mayfair, London W1J 7LB

The Metropolitan Museum of Art Netsuke Masterpieces

by Barbra Teri Okada 

It's free!  Download it here as a pdf
Readable on your desktop, Kindle, iBooks, and most devices

Adornment in Clay: Ceramic Netsuke from the Richard R. Silverman Collection

by Laura Mueller 

Renowned netsuke collector Richard R. Silverman's gift of 226 ceramic netsuke to the Toledo Museum of Art constitutes perhaps the largest public collection of these miniature clay sculptures in the world. Adornment in Clay provides new scholarship and an in-depth examination of this subgenre in the context of both Japanese ceramics and the wider field of netsuke production. 8 1/2 x 8 1/2 inches, color images throughout. Contents: Foreword (Carolyn M. Putney); Introduction (Neil Davey); Collecting Ceramic Netsuke: My Personal Journey (Richard R. Silverman); A History of Ceramic Netsuke; Selected Highlights; Map of Kiln Locations; Illustrated Checklist of 226 Netsuke plus Seals and Signatures; Glossary; Selected Bibliography; Index.

Ichiro: Master Netsuke Carver

by Norman Sandfield & Huey G. Shelton 

Ichiro: Master Netsuke Carver features more than 150 netsuke by a single artist, one of the largest single-artist netsuke collections in the world. In addition to the Shelton Collection, the book features netsuke from the collections of Robert O. and Miriam Kinsey and Richard R. Silverman. 



The Peacock's Feather: Gentlemen's Jewelry of Old Japan

by Joseph Kurstin & Gilles Lorin

9.25 x 12", 132 pp., 112 color plates, Subject index, Artist index, boards, d.j., Miami, 2006
Drawing from numerous individual collections, this catalog was published to coincide with the exhibition of netsuke, inro and sagemono at the Morikami Museum in conjunction with the 2007 International Netsuke Society Convention. The pieces displayed here are among the finest examples in private hands and certainly rival those of the world’s major museum collections. Included are over 50 netsuke, 39 inro with netsuke, and nearly 20 other sagemono. Each piece is given a brief description with insights into the artists and subject matter. This catalog provides a rare opportunity to see some of these incredible works of art never seen or seldom shown before.
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More Things in Heaven and Earth

by Paul G. Moss, Max Rutherston and Douglas J.K. Wright 

94 netsuke, 2 sceptres and 48 ojime, illustrated in colour, often from several angles, and discussed at length by the three authors. 215 pages. Published by Sydney L. Moss Ltd., London, in 2006. £65 or US $120 plus postage.


Netsuke: The Tokyo Meiko Kagami , Tokyo Living Masters List

by Tokyo Metropolitan Government in December 1879
Edited and translated by Shingo Yamaguchi 

The "Tokyo Meiko Kagami (Tokyo Living Masters List)" is historic material published by the YURINDO Company (Minami-denma-Cho, Tokyo) after investigation and editing by the Industry Promotion Division of the Tokyo Metropolitan Government in December 1879. The Masters of each crafts fields, living in Tokyo in early stages of Meiji era, were recorded in a 477 page book....
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Ninety-nine Netsuke and One Inro

Published by Sagemonoya (Yabane Co., Ltd.) in October 2004

Captions in English and Japanese

Sale catalog with beautiful illustrations of 1 inro and 99 netsuke that are high in quality and richly varied in subjects and materials. Available through
Sagemonoya (Yabane Co., Ltd.)  
Yotsuya 4-28-20-704
Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0004, Japan. 
Tel: 03-3352-6286      Fax: 03-3356-6581
Cover, Sagemonoya (Yabane Co., Ltd.) (c) 2004


Recommended Netsuke Books

The Raymond and Frances Bushell Collection of Netsuke: A Legacy at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Exquisite color photography and scholarly insights bring alive this amazing tradition. It features more than 820 netsuke, with accompanying text that gives a complete overview of changing tastes in netsuke collecting and carving throughout its history and into the present day. Each netsuke has a detailed description that places the subject in the context of Japanese life and history, and gives important information about the carver or technique. The enormous variety of netsuke subjects are thoroughly examined, including famous battles and samurai, kabuki and noh actors and plays, scandalous stories, animals and imaginary creatures, Buddhist sages, and Shinto rituals.

Buy it on Amazon


Netsuke: Fantasy and Reality in Japanese Miniature Sculpture

Netsuke: Fantasy and Reality in Japanese Miniature Sculpture

by Joe Earle

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Expressions of Style: Netsuke as Art

Expressions of Style: Netsuke as Art

by Rosemary Bandini. 

Over 200 netsuke are represented in this catalog, which represents a breadth of carving styles, themes and artists. The works range from mythological creatures to animals of the zodiac, and from legendary personages to representations of common people. The accompanying text provides the historical and mythological background indispensable to understanding this miniature art form. Includes an illustrated index of signatures. 176 pp. 255 color illustrations. $60.00 including shipping to US addresses (international shipping costs determined on a case-by-case basis). Personal checks and all major credit cards accepted. Please contact Scholten Japanese Art at


Netsuke: The French Connection

Netsuke: The French Connection

Like Faberge eggs or Lalique jewelry, the elegant Netsuke shown in this catalogue, many of them from present and past French collections, prove once again that size is no criterion for judging artistic excellence. The catalogue contains informative texts in English, French, and Japanese, dealing with the origins of the Netsuke art form and the migration of Netsuke from Japan to France. The catalogue is priced at US$185, with overseas postage included. Orders should be accompanied by checks made out to
Robert Fleischel and mailed to
Yabane Co, Ltd.,
Yotsuya 4-28-20-704 
Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0004


Trumpf Collection

The Trumpf Collection

This volume presents netsuke from the collection of the two leading netsuke collectors: Anne and Christian Trumpf, now in the Linden Museum, Stuttgart. Volume I, available as a stand-alone volume, illustrates a selection of 112 masterpieces in full color with text in both English and German. Volume II, not available unless purchase as a two-volume set, contains a complete inventory of over 850 pieces illustrated in black and white with text only in German language.

Buy it at Paragon


Huthart Collection

Huthart Collection of Iwami Netsuke

Robert S. Huthart's collection of Iwami netsuke, the largest anywhere in the world, includes more than 360 examples and is particularly rich in signed pieces by five most famous Iwami carvers: Tomiharu (the founder of Iwami style), his daughter Bunsho, her nephew Gansui, the independent artist Kanman, and Goho, who was active in the neighboring province of Aki. The catalogue includes at least one color reproduction of each piece alongside a detailed description and information about subject-matter and provenance.

Buy it at Paragon


Japanese Treasures

Japanese Treasures

Catalogue of Japanese netsuke in the collection of the Toledo Museum of Art, including the early holdings of Noah H. Swayne and Harry Fee, and the recent donation by Richard R. Silverman, one of the most important collectors of netsuke. The collection features many rare pieces, including a rare glass netsuke and early 19th century netsuke of a warrior wearing a helmet.
Buy it on Amazon      Buy it at Paragon


Inro to Netsuke

Inro to Netsuke

This volume published in 2000 is a complete catalogue of the collection of inro and netsuke in the Tokyo National Museum. The collection contains 108 inro and 565 netsuke, including 272 pieces  from the Go collection. Both inro and netsuke in the collection are of extremely fine quality because they were collected early and include many national treasures. Each piece is illustrated with the artist's signature where available. The hardcover book contains 250 pages, 16 color plates, and 675 items illustrated in black and white. Text in Japanese with an introduction and list of plates in English.

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The Cohen Collection

Neil K. Davey provides detailed descriptions for this easy to use, interactive, reference CD-ROM. The Cohen Collection features 305 works of art, including 57 netsuke, 62 inro and lacquer boxes with 645 color photographs, including close-ups of signatures and seals. Divided into categories, an effective search facility and a slide show feature. Selected descriptions or photographs can be copied to the user's PC or printed out.

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Shunga Netsuke

Shunga Netsuke

The catalogue contains 99 netsuke of subtle shunga ("Spring Picture" or erotic subjects). Twists and hidden meanings lend  surprise, humor, and delight seldom seen in the erotica of other cultures. The 40 page, color catalog is available for $50 US made out to Robert Fleischel and sent to
Yabane Co, Ltd.,
Yotsuya 4-28-20-704 
Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0004

Buy it at Paragon!


For Myth, Reality,and Magical Transformation

Myth, Reality, and Magical Transformation

Selected largely from private collections, based around a core of works from a private Dutch collection, the survey of 84 fine and remarkably varied netsuke ranges from several strong and important early animals and figures, some of them dating from the early and mid eighteenth centuries, to superfine and fascinating later works of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The color, hardback catalogue is 204 pages long with 283 photos(several of each netsuke). Cost is £65 or $100 US with postage and packing as follows: UK £5, Europe £6.50, USA £13.50 or $21.50 US, Far East/ Australia £14.50 or $23 US. Surface mail to all destinations is £6 or $9.50 US. Please contact Sydney Moss, Ltd. for further information. Telephone 020-7629 4670 or facsimile 020-7491 9278.


Netsuke: The Japanese Art of Miniature Carving

Netsuke: The Japanese Art of Miniature Carving

Catalogue from the 1998 netsuke exhibition at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, text by Matthew Welch and Sharen Chappell.

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The Ultimate Netsuke Bibliography

The Ultimate Netsuke Bibliography

An Annotated Guide to Miniature Japanese Carvings by Norman L. Sandfield.

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Bandini Book

Shishi and Other Netsuke: The Collection of Harriet Szechenyi

A 200 plus page hard back book with over 200 full color illustrations of the netsuke in the Harriet Szechenyi Collection. Authored and published by Rosemary Bandini, £65 or $105, plus £5 UK & Europe, $15 Rest of World postage. Contact Rosemary Bandini, PO Box 2281, Woodford Green, IG7 5YP, England, e-mail:

 Buy it on Amazon


Morra Netsuke & Sagemono

Morra -  Netsuke Sagemono

Lella e Gianni Morra catalogue consisting of 45 netsuke and sagemono, plus 11 illustrated source books for Japanese craftsmen. The catalog is available for US $22. The gallery can be e-mailed at

Buy it at Paragon!


1998 Sagemonoya Catalogue

Sagemonoya Gallery -  Netsuke & Sagemono

Sagemonoya Gallery 1998 catalogue consisting of 175 items, 55 Sagemono and 120 Netsuke. The catalogue is available for US $30, postage paid.

So School Catalogue

Sagemonoya Gallery -  So School Netsuke

Sagemonoya Gallery So School catalogue consisting of 99 So School Netsuke. The catalogue is available for US $50, postage paid.

Eskenazi Catalogue 1998

Eskenazi -  European Collection

Eskenazi 1998 sales catalogue of Japanese netsuke, ojime and inro from a private European collection.

Toyama Museum Exhibition

Toyama Museum Exhibition

The catalogue for the April - May 1998 exhibition of netsuke and sagemono at the Toyama Museum, Toyama, Japan. The text is in Japanese, with captions in English and Japanese. All 377 items in the exhibition are illustrated in color.

The International Netsuke Society is vehemently opposed to the trafficking, trade or commerce of illegal ivory, horn or any other illegal material. We support and comply with all international laws and regulations, including but not limited to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), the Endangered Species Act, and the African Elephant Conservation Act.