Ishikawa Rensai (b.1832)
Asakusa, circa 1860
A walrus ivory pipe case of warizutsu form. A plover hovers in the air above a clump of two autumn plants: kikyo (balloon flower) and ominaeshi (golden valerian), the flowers seeming to appear in a cloud of mist. The season we refer to as Autumn (or Fall) in Japan spans late August to November, when the morning can bring mists which are burnt away by the appearance of the sun. The background of both motifs forms jagged irregular reserves incised with short parallel vertical strokes, the whole enhanced with sumi-e ink stain. The himotoshi is formed by the bird’s extended wing.