East Asia

East Asian art constitutes the largest and most important inventory within the collection categories of Archaeology, Global Art, Applied Arts. As early as 1898, Karl Ernst Osthaus acquired his first Japanese objects from the Hamburg Arts and Crafts Museum for Museum Folkwang, which he was establishing at the time. In the following years, he enlarged this portfolio with great intensity, relying on the knowledge of Marcel Bing in Paris and Galerie R. Wagner in Berlin, the leading experts on Japanese art at the time.
Prominent previous owners guaranteed the quality of the objects. For this reason, Osthaus expanded the collection by making purchases at major auctions in Paris devoted to Japanese art and artefacts. The question of authenticity became increasingly more important. Occasional acquisitions were made from 1910 onwards through direct contacts in Japan. In addition, from early on, select Chinese works of art complemented the objects from Japan.
As of 1908, Museum Folkwang housed the first German art collection to include objects from the Indonesian Sunda Islands. Java was then a Dutch colony, thus explaining Osthaus’s purchases of Indonesian objects from art dealers in Amsterdam. Notable works of ancient Chinese cultures were acquired up until the 1960s.

To Western Asia...

Back...

Japan
Plaited Basket, undated
Elongated hanging basket with handle and pointed base, roughly plaited
Acquired 1898 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

China
Bowl Stand (chatou or zhantou), Southern Song, 12th/13th century
Saucer for tea bowl
Wood, laminated fabric, red and neutral lacquer (guri-lacquer), on the surface light negoro-effect, inside red lacquered
Acquired probably 1900 for the Museum Folkwang Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Tsuba (Sword Guard), ca. 1750 - 1800
As motif a monkey
Iron, open-work, damascened with copper, potentially shakudô (copper/ gold)
Acquired 1901 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Writing-Box (suzuribako), Edo-period, late 18th / early 19th century
As motif „monkey’s grasp for the moon“ (enkô sokugetsu) (lid exterior); a crab on a grassy embankment
Bamboo, braided and covered with dark-brown lacquer, edges in black lacquer, decorated with black lacquer, red lacquer, powdered gold, inlays of metall, lead, ceramic and mother of Pearl
Acquired 1903 for the Museum Folkwang Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Tsuba (Sword Guard), ca. 1750 - 1800
Iron, open-work, damascened with copper, potentially shibuichi (copper/ silver) with shakudô (copper/ gold)
Acquired 1901 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Inro (Case), 19th century
Decorated with family crests
Four cases, iron, damascened with gold, Ojime: coral, new cord
Acquired 1903 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Netsuke, ca. 1850
Rat
Boxwood with horn inlay
Acquired 1901 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Netsuke, ca. 1850
God of Thunder Raijin with his drum sitting in clouds
Boxwood, inlaid with ivory and horn
Acquired 1903 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Netsuke, 18th/19th century
Scull with snake
Boxwood, ivory, lacquer or horn?
Acquired 1901 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Netsuke, 19th century
Octopus in a storage jar
Boxwood, inlaid with horn and ivory
Acquired 1906 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Netsuke, ca. 1850
Rabbit in the waves
Boxwood, inlaid with horn and ivory
Acquired 1901 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Tea Bowl (chawan) – Ido Type, Edo-period, 17th century
Stoneware, cream-colored glaze, mended with gold lacquer
Acquired 1902 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Incense Container (kogo), late Edo-period, first half of the 19th century
As motif, a firefly over sedge, inside blades of Suzuki grass
Wood, black lacquer, powdered gold, inlays of horn, mother of pearl and red-colored bone, on the bottom black lacquer, lead edging
Acquired before 1904 for the Museum Folkwang Hagen, since 1922 Essen

China
Bottle, Late Ming (1368-1644)
Porcellain
Acquired before 1905 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Japan
Oto-goze / Okame, 18th century
Facial mask for Kyogen Theatre
Fat, simple, not very pretty woman
Wood, carved, whitewash with polychrome Pigments
Acquired in 1910 for the Museum Folkwang Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Korea
Kundika, Goryeo dynasty 935 - 1392, 11th century
Water bottle with long neck, copper alloy
Acquired 1912 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Indonesia
Temple Bell, undated
Copper alloy or copper, cast
Acquired 1912 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

China
Water Vessel, Ch'in dynasty 255-207 BC
Copper or copper alloy
Acquired before 1922, presumably before 1920 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Siam (Thailand)
Storage Jar, 15th century
Stoneware, celadon glaze
Acquired before 1922, presumably before 1920 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Indonesia
Bamboo Container (Lid is Missing), undated
Bamboo, base: softwood
Acquired before 1922, presumably before 1920 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Indonesia
Bamboo Container, with Lid and Reddish Cord, undated
Bamboo, cotton?, lid: mahogany or similar, base: softwood, filled with unknown material
Acquired before 1922, presumably before 1920 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Indonesia
Bamboo Container, undated
Ritual object/ implement, bamboo, softwood, filled with unknown material
Acquired before 1922, presumably before 1920 for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

Tibet or Nepal
Buddha Vajrasattva, 18th century or earlier
Copper, fire-gilded, inlaid with semiprecious stones
Acquired before 1922, presumably before 1920 for the Museum Folkwang, since 1922 Essen

China
Vase, Ming dynasty (1368 - 1644)
Fired Clay, brown under glaze, black overglaze
Acquired before 1921for the Museum Folkwang, Hagen, since 1922 Essen

China
Document Box, Ryoshibako, 16th century
Lacquered wood, inlaid with horn or ivory
Acquired 1922 at the latest for the Museum Folkwang

China
Enthroned Buddha (Guanying?) on Stylized Rock, Washed by Water and Carried by 4 Figures, 18./19. century
Copper- or bronze alloy (?), fire-gilded
Acquired before 1922 for the Museum Folkwang

China
Bowl, Yuan dynasty, late 13th – early 14th century
Jun ware, stoneware, violet-blue glaze and copper red glaze
Acquired before 1922 for the Museum Folkwang

China
Urn, Banshan Ware, middle of the 3rd millennium BC
Earthenware, painting in brown and red engobe
Donation 1926 an das Museum Folkwang

China
Statuette, Tang dynasty (618–906)
Fired white clay, painted
Acquired 1927 for the Museum Folkwang

Korea
Storage Jar – Moon Jar Type, Joseon dynasty, 17th century
Porcelain, white glaze
Acquired 1929 for the Museum Folkwang

China
Gui Bronze, 8th century BC
Cult vessel for ritual sacrifices and ancestor worship, with Taotie-masks
Bronze
Acquired 1962 for the Museum Folkwang

Photos: Museum Folkwang und Hans Hansen, 2009-2018