The material and design here are in complete synergy. The body of the case is constructed from cherry wood; the natural bark forms a panel for the main design to be set against, simply lacquered and polished. As you move around the sides and onto the back, the bark has been carved away. A branch extends from the side, thinning as it travels around the back of the case and across the bark of the cherry, a pair of crows perched in the tree. Sprays of cherry blossom and delicate black leaves decorate the front and back of the case. The untouched bark to the front represents the trunk of the cherry tree, with the lacquered branch growing out from the side of the trunk. An ingenious use of the material to create a harmonious design.
Unsigned, Zeshin school
Late 19th century
Length - 23cm
Please excuse the line of light that runs through the crow, it was very difficult to highlight the delicate work without adding some additional light.
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