In terms of practical structure, the bisecting line running the length of the shape, from the end of the shank, up and over the bowl, creates, surprisingly, a quite natural feel in hand: the thumb tucked comfortably beneath the curling wave/fin, top fingers grasping the large, panel on the left flank (that is if you prefer the left hand), or the thumb resting along the panel, the pipe sinking deep in the palm, with the pointer and middle now uplifting the bowl, affixed to the smaller panel of the right-flank (if you prefer holding it in the right). Unsurprising given the shape, this division also allows the left side to sport a rather impressive canvas of birdseye, just one of the many visual 'tricks' that Tokutomi seems to be playing here.
Aesthetically, it flies in the face of the Ivarsson school, Tokutomi working to balance extreme asymmetry with a complex abundance of lines, panels, and a singular fin: features that rush across the compact shape, adding a sense of fluid momentum where needed, and subtracting superfluous weight where necessary. The result is something iconically statuesque, but small enough to be a miniature token to be taken out of pocket, admired, and contemplated upon; a shape representational enough to be pegged as an aquatic life form, but abstracted enough to be amorphous, melting into liquidity.
The pipe you see is the pipe you receive. Click here to see our photography process.