Ryan Alden: Sandblasted Morta Fig with Bamboo (King of Clubs)

Product Number: 002-777-0050

While Ryan Alden has dabbled in more organic forms such as plateau-topped bent Dublins, sure-sitting Cuttys, and even a wildly-shaped Volcano, the Texas-based carver is most notably fond of and known for his classically English renditions of pipe chart standards: traditional Billiard and Apple variants. Drifting from that penchant, however, Alden here presents a much more organically inclined Fig shape, the natural form accentuated by a wild, curling section of bamboo. Though robust and muscular, this piece is defined by smooth flowing curves and a fluid profile, the S-curve winding dramatically and the bowl's mass plumply rounded.

The bowl is fashioned from morta, a medium Ryan has worked with before; except here, the American carver opted for a lighter, more natural color palette, the morta displaying more olive tones as opposed to the typical, jet-black hue. It pairs well with the pale, yellow-ish bamboo, and the crisp sandblast of the bowl blends intentionally into the compact knuckles of bamboo, which Ryan has sanded down slightly to maintain the profile's clean lines. A vulcanite ring at the shank end, emulating the look of an extra knuckle of bamboo, blends the composition seamlessly into the stem, making for a well balanced design overall, and to top it all off, Ryan flattened the heel and fore of the bowl, enabling this piece to sit solidly on a flat surface — a trait not often seen in bamboo-adorned pipes, especially those with a significant bend.

-Truett Smith
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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 5.41 in./137.41 mm.
  • Weight: 2.27 oz./64.41 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.80 in./45.72 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.44 in./36.58 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.77 in./19.56 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.84 in./46.74 mm.
  • Stem Material: Vulcanite
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Freehand
  • Finish: Rusticated
  • Material: Morta
  • Country: United States
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