In the hands of Japanese netsuke carvers like Ryushi Komada, something quite mundane becomes sublime. From a simple block of wood emerges a delicate and expressive face, the sense of movement in the folds of a dress, the fine strings on an ancient instrument. A third-generation carver, Komada is a master creator of these charm-like pieces that are the perfect embodiment of "necessity is the mother of invention" — and, in this instance, artistry. They look like miniature sculptures, just an inch or two tall. But they serve a specific purpose.