Adrienne Barbanson's netsuke collection makes $930,500 at Bonhams

Fifty-eight diminutive nestsuke offered from the collection of the late Adrienne Barbanson auctioned at Bonhams London on May 13.

The auction, which drew throngs of bidders, was a "white glove" sale, with 100% of lots sold.

Good things come in small packages – this little hare sold for £43,250 ($65,833)

Masters of miniaturisation, Japanese craftspeople carved tiny netsuke from wood, ivory and coral, which were used to anchor dangling pouches (also known as "inro") to the sashes of a kimono.

Auction highlights included a Lilliputian depiction of three monkeys by Toyomasa, which sold for £63,350 ($96,450), and a fine wooden hare netsuke, also by Toyomasa, which brought £43,250 ($65,833).

Bonhams' Susannah Yip comments: "Netsuke, like diamonds, prove that some of the most desirable things come in small packages."

Sign up for our free weekly newsletter.

Featured products

Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Sale price£399
In stock
Fidel Castro signed certificateFidel Castro Signed Certificate
Fidel Castro signed certificate
Sale price£2,995
In stock
King Henry VIII Autographed DocumentKing Henry VIII Autographed Document
King Henry VIII Autographed Document
Sale price£55,000
In stock