Crab, monkey and a mortar..?

Mája decided that she wants to see some museums in Japan, so we went to the Kyoto art Museum, which is mostly closed without any info on their websites, so don’t bother.. BUT! Netsuke museum is something worth seeing..

Netsuke are small ivory sculptures manually carved and coloured and are supposed to be button holders of pouches and boxes attached to kimono’s belt via a piece of string, as kimonos don’t have pockets. Netsuke evolved from simple wooden buttons to its own art form detached from original purpose, netsuke motives are very broad – there are traditional noh masks, slices of watermelon, birds, samurai warriors, fish.. some of them are captured on image further down, few we saw are part of a silly and sinister fairy-tale..

..There is somewhat silly and sinister fairy-tale named after its main protagonists – crab and monkey and mortar, and others – a bee, acorn, super-fast growing persimmon tree.. and some really weird things, like the bucket of mortar and an anthropomorphic cow dung. the story is really kind of a silly one – monkey screws crab over to basically steal some food crab found, but, by deal with the monkey, crab receives a single persimmon seed which then crab plants and bullies it to grow quickly and to give fruits, but the tree grows too big for crab to climb so the monkey is summoned to help the crab to get ripe persimmon fruits, instead monkey tosses and hurts the crab with green ones.

The rest of the story is about vengeance of the Crab & friends – the bee, acorn, bucket of mortar and the cow poo – the official story goes that monkey goes home where crab and friends are already waiting hidden in the monkey’s house: acorn in fire place and goes jihad on monkey, exploding in the fire, and blowing ashes into monkeys eyes, then the bee hidden in the water vessel stings the monkey which makes monkey run out but slips on the cow dung, which was hidden on top of the doors, now lying on in-front of them. Monkey slips and falls outside of the house, and the mortar bucket ‚jumps‘ from the roof on the monkey’s head. I suspect them killing the monkey and hiding the body.. instead the story ends noting that monkey ran away and never came back.

so the story is here because of the four of netsuke figures, and also for little double u, tea & ef.