Tsuge Ikebana: Smooth Bent Apple (Fukuda) (L) (110) (2016)

Product Number: 002-623-4590

Back in the 1960s and '70s, Tsuge sent several of its craftsmen to Denmark to learn from experienced artisan carvers. One of those Japanese artisans that took the trip was Kazuhiro Fukuda, and he received instruction from Sixten Ivarsson while in Denmark, eventually making other trips in subsequent years. Fukuda brought what he learned about engineering and artistry back to Japan, and later the Ikebana workshop was established, representing Tsuge's most prestigious pieces. Comprised of three artisans — Fukuda, Ohi, and Kikuchi — each Ikebana pipe is entirely handmade by one of the three carvers, each with their own individual stamp, but united under the Tsuge Ikebana name, ikebana literally meaning "living flowers."

This particular piece was fashioned by Fukuda and displays a wasp-waisted motif, the bowl and shank visually separated by the well-defined, curling transition. Though seemingly disparate parts, the two elements display similar shaping cues — the shank curling and flaring into the rounded, bulbous end, while the bowl displays a complementary muscular plumpness. It's a whimsical yet demanding way to approach a classic, inherently organic shape such as the Apple as any small mistake can throw everything off. Thankfully, in Fukuda's gifted hands we can rest assured that it has been perfectly rendered, with the bowl and shank retaining their supple curves. Despite the unconventional shaping of this piece, the grain orientation is breathtaking and precise with tendrils of flame grain engulfing the bowl underneath the vibrant contrast stain.

- Jeffery Sitts
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 4.13 in./104.90 mm.
  • Weight: 2.70 oz./76.54 g.
  • Bowl Height: 2.01 in./51.05 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.58 in./40.13 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.76 in./19.30 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.89 in./48.01 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Bent Apple
  • Finish: Smooth
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: Japan
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