The Japanese school of pipemaking is something of a hybrid of Danish pipe design and Japanese culture's own distinctive flavor of balanced, organic asymmetry. Typically that is expressed through designs that have the look of an Ivarsson and/or Danish Modern foundation, tweaked and reinterpreted to suit Japanese aesthetics. In this case, however, Ichi presents a shape so wildly flourishing and dashing, I can't help but suspect that he was taking a nod from the flamboyant "Danish fancy" freehands of the 70s instead. Even so, and despite the exceptionally lively profile this briar cuts, it is far more controlled in line, form, and balance, both in profile and in the subtly asymmetrical cross-section.
- Eric N. Squires