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Thread: Looking for information on this piece of antique Japanese furniture

  1. #1

    Post Looking for information on this piece of antique Japanese furniture

    I am a consignment seller, I sell items for other people, mostly on Ebay for commission. I have a client who is looking to get some information and date a piece of furniture she's had for 15 years.

    I aksed for all of this information:

    Find out the composition of the furniture. What type of wood? Is there marble? Etc. List all materials.
    Make a note of any damage, including scratches, dents, chips, cracks, etc.
    Take clear, well-lit photographs from all angles.
    Search the piece for any labels or makerís marks. Write them down and take photos.
    Look to see if any previous repairs have been made to the piece (like a new screw replacing an old one).
    Write down any known provenance of the piece.

    Unfortunately she had none of this info and only told me there were no makers marks. I am just hoping to get some information or pointed in the direction of someone who might be able to help me.

    Thanks so much and here are some photos.Click image for larger version. 

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Alexandria VA

    Default Re: Looking for information on this piece of antique Japanese furniture

    When looking to evaluate furniture, it's critical to see interior construction. It requires more than external photos - so you should pull one of the drawers and photo it so the joinery method can be seen, the interior of the panel doors on the bottom (backside of them), details of the bracket foot as best you can and ideally remove all the top two levels of drawers and a photo showing how the top is attached from the inside.

    I can tell you this much, that's a very complex piece of furniture, and the top and sides are single-board construction from what I can see. This appears to be old-world crafted. There look to be (46) drawers in that piece and if they are all hand-dovetailed that's an incredible amount of work, and all have to be hand-fit. Real brasses, maybe custom? This is not your typical garage-sale piece - but I don't know the market for this class of furniture.

    Best course of action would be to take a very detailed set of photos and then find an antique dealer who specializes in this class of antique (most likely will be a West Coast antique dealer) and email back and forth with them to see determine valuation. I personally like it for the complexity of the build an it would be a home run acquisition for someone who decorates in that style. It's a pretty cool piece and a lot of time was spent building it.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

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