This netsuke is a witty rendition of a Japanese allegory on truth and interpretation. A group of six blind men endeavor to describe an elephant, however their attempts are thwarted as none of them are able to describe the entire animal.
Signature: Kuku Josō tō
[ Adam Clark Vroman , Pasadena, CA , 1910; sold to Sage].; Margaret Olivia Sage , New York (1910; donated to MMA).
Artist: Date: late 11th to early 12th century Accession Number: 2015.300.251a, b Date: late 11th to early 12th centuryMedium: Lacquered and gilded Japanese cypressAccession: 2015.300.251a, bOn view in:Gallery 224