25.7 x 23.8 cm
Height: 4.8 cm
Muromachi Period (Early- 15th Century)
Important Cultural Property
Kyoto National Museum
The design of this inkstone box is derived from a waka poem found in the poetry anthology Kokin Wakashu: "Plovers that inhabit the rocky coast of the Salt Cape; sing that the reign of Your Majesty may last forever."
The lid is decorated in a colorful variety of lacquer techniques: plovers in gold maki'e and silver inlay on thickly laid nashiji ground, high-relief maki'e rocks, a gold ikakeji and silver-dotted seashore and polished maki'e wave patterns. Selected passages from the poem in cursive Chinese script are integrated into the rock patterns.
The design as a whole follows the traditional Japanese Yamato-e style, but some details on the rocks reflect a more Chinese style. The design and craftmanship of this box are representative of Muromachi Period lacquerwork.