John He: Sandblasted Long Shank Acorn with Presentation Box and Tamper (19/21)

Product Number: 002-818-0010

A student of Hiroyuki Tokutomi, Chinese carver John He often caters toward plump, organic forms, typically accented with subtle hints of asymmetry, his own style usually manifested in long-shanked designs with simple, well-executed finishes. This Acorn is an excellent example of He's work — the elongated shank curves and tapers toward the transition, which is neatly tucked underneath the bowl's high-set, bulbous waistline. Forward-canted to continue the shank and stem's momentum, the bowl beautifully balances organic and supple roundness with a dynamic posture that conforms comfortably to wrapped fingers. The teardrop shank is tilted to the right, the resulting ridgeline traveling down the lower left flank, imbuing the piece with asymmetry and calling to mind the classic Danish shaping cue. The shank face, then, is left smooth to contrast against the stummel's sandblast, while the mortise is reinforced with an inset ring of brass for a mount-style tenon arrangement.

The sleek design is signature He, and as such, it's the perfect piece to come displayed in an equally striking presentation box. Also made by John, the box features a sliding lid to reveal a cushion within, vibrantly patterned with cranes in flight. As a companion to the pipe, the Chinese artisan has included a trim bamboo tamper, set atop a flared, brass foot. While the pale hue of the tamper is a stark contrast to the dark chocolate stain of the pipe, the natural organicism of the bamboo complements that of the pipe for a gorgeous pairing. For the tamper, John used bamboo that he received from Tokutomi during He's first visit to the Japanese master's workshop, and the box also acts as an homage to Toku — He's first introduction to pipes having come from a picture of a Tokutomi Freehand Dublin in a presentation box. Completing the set is a leather pipe bag for safe and convenient travel, and it all comes with a wax-sealed card from John himself.

-Truett Smith
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 5.55 in./140.97 mm.
  • Weight: 1.44 oz./40.82 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.77 in./44.96 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.48 in./37.59 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.79 in./20.07 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.81 in./45.97 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Acorn/Pear
  • Finish: Sandblast
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: China
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