Vivian Wang

White Tiger Cub

Cast glass, stoneware, semi-precious stones, crystal, gold leaf, silk damask pillow, and ochre cord with crystals, Figure (including 1" thick pillow): 23"h x 14"w x 15"d, tiger cub: 7"h x 5"w x 6.5"d, Item No. 19047,

WHITE TIGER CUB portrays a young boy holding his pet tiger cub. It was inspired by “Gosho-Ningyo” (“Palace Dolls”), one of the most distinctive of the many Japanese doll forms. These dolls were created during Japan’s Golden era, the Edo Period (1615-1868), when doll-making was at the height of popularity and importance. 

The most exquisite and expensive dolls made at this time, Goshos usually depicted chubby young boys with bright expressions and playful postures. Often shown holding a toy in their hands, Goshos were originally given as gifts within the Imperial family. 

Gosho doll-makers were very well-respected and were known as Imperial Craftsmen. They had over the years achieved a level of distinction that elevated them above other doll makers of the period. Their skill had earned them the honor of making dolls for the emperor and his household. 

Gosho dolls gradually emerged as symbols of good luck. They were often placed on the household altar and considered a household god. The Japanese believed that the Gosho represented a link between children and good fortune.