Tsuge: Urushi Maple Leaf Billiard Tobacco Pipe

Product Number: 002-099-10084

Urushi, translated as "Lacquer Picture," is an ancient Japanese art form whose history stretches back nearly 10 centuries, originating in the Jomon period and remaining relevant and important in Japanese culture since. The art form involves the measured application of a hardy, translucent lacquer to a porous surface over many repetitions, with each layer being allowed to dry in between. The lacquer itself is mixed with pigment and used to slowly build up an image, gradually becoming a fully-realized picture. The drying process can take days, and the multiple repetitions of this process means that creating a piece of art with this technique can take anywhere from a few months to several years.

The word Urushi can refer to either the lacquer itself or the finished product, with this straight Billiard from Japanese marque Tsuge representing the latter. With briar as a medium, Tsuge have taken a classic form and elevated it to new artistic highs, keeping the shape traditional and utilizing this ancient art form to create something that merges contemporary design with rich history. The stummel itself features a black stain as a base, and atop this is an array of multicolored maple leaves, creating a rich contrast that inexorably draws the eye to the leaves themselves, while a brass-hued accent band at the junction ensures the visual weight here is evenly distributed.

-John McElheny

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Measurements & Other Details

  • Length: 5.94 in./150.88 mm.
  • Weight: 1.42 oz./40.37 g.
  • Bowl Height: 1.88 in./47.75 mm.
  • Chamber Depth: 1.64 in./41.66 mm.
  • Chamber Diameter: 0.82 in./20.83 mm.
  • Outside Diameter: 1.46 in./37.08 mm.
  • Stem Material: Acrylic
  • Filter: None
  • Shape: Billiard
  • Finish: Smooth
  • Material: Briar
  • Country: Japan
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