Rare Hand Painted Nippon Lady Head Vase

This example is most likely a reproduction of one of the Enesco company's 'Sophisticated Lady' head vase designs, though we were unable to confirm this with an exact match to a known example made by that company. It has many of the same features of known examples, however, including long eye lashes, painted finger nails, the oval ring on her hand and imitation pearls necklace and earrings.

This item is not really rare, at all, though that term is often used freely to describe such things for sale in Internet listings, as seen in the title for this piece. These spurious items usually can be purchased by the gross from reproduction wholesale sources. Anytime a seller is describing an item as 'rare' their use of that term should be supported by information defining why the term is accurate. If such information is not included in the description, we recommend asking for it to see if any supporting documentation can actually be given. If a seller cannot support their use of the term in reference to an item it is also quite possible they don't know as much about the object as they seem to want to suggest, including whether or not it is an authentic piece.

Head vases like this were popular decorative items in the mid-20th century and this piece has the classic look of the modern ladies of that time. While most of the reproduction and fantasy head vases currently entering the collector market can generally be identified by the poor quality of their manufacture or painting, others may be of slightly better quality and can be more easily confused for that reason. For the purposes of quickly identifying items of better quality specifically, then, the most important thing to remember is that only head vase reproductions and fakes bear the mark shown on the bottom of this piece. In 1921 all imported items were legally required to be marked with the English name of their country of origin and 'Nippon' was changed to read 'Japan' in marks for Japanese goods intended to be imported into the United States.

Easy enough to remember, just that one thing - if an item was supposedly made after the first quarter of the 20th century, like the 1950's or 1960's, but "Nippon" is in the mark, it can't be authentic.

This example measures approximately 6 and 3/4 inches tall by 4 and 1/4 inches wide.

Item ID: 2007RP00056

Modern Reproductions, Fakes and Fantasies


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