Japan, with its history of seclusion, has long fascinated Westerners. When the country opened up to trade with the West in the mid-1850s, every aspect of Japanese culture—from the buildings and furniture, to the artworks and handcrafts, to the way Japanese people dressed and drank their tea—was endlessly fascinating.

It's no wonder, then, that Japanese antiques are among the most collectible today. Advanced sword-making techniques and romantic notions about the honorable samurai warrior class fuel the popularity of Japanese swords. While delicately crafted silk kimonos are dismissed as hopelessly outdated by modern Japanese, Western collectors snap them up. The elements of sagemono, a system designed to make up for the kimono's lack of pockets, are highly collectible, including the inro boxes attached to obi sashes by cords and the intricately carved fasteners known as netsuke.

For centuries, Japanese artisans have mastered the art of making scroll paintings and screens depicting tigers, Mount Fuji, flowers, Buddhist themes, and calligraphy. The distinctly Japanese style of woodblock prints known as ukiyo-e or the floating world of entertainment and pleasure helped inspire the 19th century Japonisme movement in Europe. Such prints by masters Hokusai (1760-1849) and Hiroshige (1797-1858) have become icons of Japan all over the world. Also widely collected are antique Japanese Imari porcelain, cloisonné, metalwork, Kokeshi dolls, and tea sets.


Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Asian Art Museum

Asian Art Museum

You can get happily lost searching through the 10,000 or so objects on the Asian Art Museum's website. For example,… [read review or visit site]

Gotheborg.com

Gotheborg.com

Jan-Erik Nilsson's extensive reference on antique Chinese porcelain. Jam-packed with information (e.g. on porcelain… [read review or visit site]



Most watched eBay auctions    

Ha0613 Japanese Samurai Sword: Nbthk Nobukane Wakizashi W Fine KoshiraeK:japanese Tachi Sword,hojyu Of Nanbokucho Era W Nthk, Koshirae*1458 Certificated Edo Japanese Antique Soten School Signed Samurai TsubaJapanese Hanging Scroll "moon Appearing Out Of Cloud" @f955Old Antique Muromachi Wakizashi Sword Signed Project Nice N Katana/tsuba/tanto 23" Koto Katana / Wakizashi Japanese Sword Ca 1500 Ubu No Kizu A+ Naked Blade K118 Japanese Sword Wakizashi In Mountings, "yoshiyuki", Nbthk Paper, Mint K122 Japanese Sword Wakizashi In Mountings, Nagamaki Shape400 Year Very Nice Old Japanese Samurai Waizashi Blade Sword Katana Strong HamonK:japanese Katana Sword,sukemitsu W Antique Koshirae#8944 Japanese Samurai Muromachi Nbthk Kicho Token Signed Fine Wakizashi SwordOld Antique Edo Wakizashi Sword Project Nice N Katana/tsuba/tanto LookWw2 Japanese Shin Gunto – Hand Forged And Signatured Components*1672 Ww2 Japan Imperial Navy Original Dagger Gunto Tanken Sword Great Vintage!K:japanese Katana Sword,mino Senjyuin Of Muromachi Era W Nbthk Hozon Koto Very Nice Old Japanese Samurai Waizashi Blade Sword Japan Katana Tanto Japanese Wwll Army Officer's Sword In Combat Mountings, "yukimitsu"Shinto Or Koto Wakizashi, No Kizu. Quality Piece W Habaki. Katana Japanese SwordJapan Antiques Edo Daruma Fuchi Kashira Tsuba Sword Koshirae Kojiri SayaJapanese 16th Century Katana In Shira-saya – Signed: Sukesada - Rare Blade!*1599 Japanese Edo 18th Century Samurai Antique Shakudo Fuchi Kashira "mouses"1937 Hiroshi Yoshida Calm Wind Japanese Woodblock Print W/ Jizuri SealOriginal! Japanese Woodblock Print Glittering Sea Hiroshi Yoshida Vtg Signed!K121 Japanese Sword Wakizashi In Mountings, Kozuka, Full Plish, MintMuseum Quality Inro With Hako Netsuke And Coral Ojime.signed 晉哉 Meiji Period.Ww2 Japanese Shin Gunto – Arsenal Made Officer's SwordVintage Japanese Kabuki Costume Kimono Uchikake Gorgeous Embroidery Kacho Good CJapanese Vintage Kimono, Silk, Furisode, White, Ume&momiji&flower, P061701Japanese Sword / Ww2 Shingunto / Signed Old Koto BladeExquisite Japanese Naval Officer Kai Gunto – Signature: Sa (koyama Nobufusa?)Japanese Antique Hiroshi Yoshida Woodblock A Little Restaurant Signed Pencil Antique Japanese Hand Painted Miniature Satsuma VaseJapanese Various Lot 6 Buddhist Mini Buddha Statue Kobo Daishi Fudomyo Zushi NrFine Polished! Nice Engraving! 70.4cm! Signed Japanese Samurai Katana Long Sword☆just Polished☆ 70cm! Signed Japanese Samurai Katana Long Sword By 藤原兼正 KanemasaJapanese Sword Wwll Naval Tanto Dagger In Kaigun-tanken Mountings Japanese Sword Wakizashi In Shirosaya Mountings "kunitsugu" Japanese Antique 19th Century Late Edo To Early Meiji Period Stag Antler NetsukeAntique Japanese Carved Okimono Figures, Meiji Period? Man With Mask + 1. Fine!An Stunning Meiji Period Gold Lacquer Inro W Hako Netsuke & Agate Ojime. Superb.Fine Old Japanese Yellow Cloisonne Bamboo Decorated Vase Signed NekkaJapanese Hanging Scroll "monkey On Persimmon Tree" @f962A Magnificent Quality Japanese Netsuke Style Okimono Of A Small Chick&egg.ryubi.Antique Japanese Bronze Okimono Wadding Crane *1662 Amazing!! Japanese Edo Antique Samurai Tsuka Signed Fuchi Kashira MenukiJapanese Hanging Scroll "moon And Monkey" @g306Superb Antique Japanese Okimono Of A Man With Fan And Gourd. 19c Signed Gyokuzan*1634japanese Edo Samurai Antique Tsuba & Tsuka With Fuchi Kashira Menuki The Kabuto Japanese Traditional Armor Used By Samurai, Made In Edo Priod, IronJapan Antiques Yoroi Katana Iron Menpo Edo Samurai Tsuba Koshirae ArmorJapanese Big Hanging Scroll : Koyo "flying Dragon" @f964Antique Japanese Netsuke Okimono Figures, SignedAntique Japanese Tsuba Solid Gold Frog Edo-priod Rare Japan Sukashi Sword QxqJapanese Antique 130 Yr Old Meiji Chestnut Suzuribako Calligraphy Tansu ChestJapanese Hanging Scroll : Gantai "dragon And Tiger" @f942Superb Bizen Shinshinto Katana In Ww2 Mounts Japanese Samurai Sword TsubaJapanese Ww2 Army Officer Sword – Shin Gunto With Tassle – Signed: KanenagaJapanese Samurai Shogun Wakizashi Katana Sword In Nice Koshirae Fitting Koto Very Nice Old Japanese Samurai Waizashi Blade Sword Japan Katana Tanto Shiro Kasamatsu Limited Japanese Woodblock Print $1 To Start Vg Condition