Identifying and evaluating
Japanese and other Asian
antiques and art objects

Greetings to all site visitors with interesting Asian objects you wish to identify or evaluate or both

For information about what your Asian antique or art is, you can send a photo to the Freer Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., or take it there by appointment if you are in the area.  They will give an opinion of what you have and how old it might be, but don't discuss price or value.  Since they specialize in Asian art but have no interest in the value of your item, you are likely to get a good opinion about what it is.  This is a public, tax-supported institution whose facilities are available to the public.  More information is available at:

For information about the value of an Asian antique or other Asian art, we suggest you send a photo to Christie's auction house with a letter describing the piece and where, when, and how you acquired it, and saying you would like their opinion of what it might sell for at auction. If it is something they would take on consignment, they will give you an opinion about what it is and an estimated price range.  This may be the best indication, short of actually selling your item, that you can get, yet it depends a great deal on the NY or other market in which Christie's operates. Because both dealers and collectors buy through auction houses in this country, you may regard their prices as either wholesale or retail. If it is not what they accept on consignment, they will simply say so. You can also browse through their current auctions or use their search engine to find similar items and their prices. For further information and addresses, please go to:

For insurance purposes in the US and perhaps elsewhere, it is necessary to hire an appraiser, who will give you a written appraisal that will be a valid indication of its value if it is stolen, damaged, or destroyed and you want to make an insurance claim regarding it.

For recent (less than 100 years old) and collectible items including Made in Japan and other export items and post-WWII memorabilia and souvenirs, try searching for similar items at eBay and see if anything that looks like what you have is being offered.  The range of quality and reality of prices on eBay is enormous, but it will give you an idea of what's going on with the sort of thing you have in this market, which could be useful if you're thinking of selling it.
If you have a brand-name or other identifying information, a Google search is sometimes fruitful, always interesting.

This information is to help people who might inquire about identifying their possessions and placing a value on them, which we cannot do over the intenet, even with images. We hope it helps you in your inquiries.   

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