Wood Bear, Ainu ,Japanese

Ainu, the indigenous ethnic group living in the Japanese archipelago started carving this wooden bears known as Higuma in the early 20 th century.

Until then these bear carvings had only existed as religious objects, usually as headdresses and prayer sticks. Hand carved ittobori style (carved from one wooden piece) of cryptomeria (cedar) wood in Hokkaido.

Measures 8”x 5” x 4.5”. Mid-century ,Good condition.