40. Japanese Meiji Export Bamboo Cane -Ca. 1880 -The cane is fashioned of a straight bamboo shoot with a shaved natural root bulb as knob and carved in the traditional Far Eastern taste with a wider nature study extending over the larger part of its entire length and fitted with a white metal ferrule. The panel is done in shallow relief and micro detail and shows a tropical garden landscape highlighted with a stork, two flying birds, an eagle all topped by a larger predatory bird. This cane belongs to an upper scale brand of popular walking sticks, always manufactured in a single example and well liked because of their lightweight and great endurance. It conforms to Japanese aesthetics, demonstrates skilled carving at its finest and exemplifies the Japanese paradox: The love of simplicity in tension with the love of intricacy and detail. In any case, it aged well and with a desirable glazed surface and golden tint. Notable is that bamboo carving is extremely difficult, the hard and fibrous material make of the smallest task a great challenge for the artist. -H. 4” x 1 ¾”, O.L. 36” -$400-$500 -Meiji, meaning Enlightened Government, was chosen by Matushito, the 15-year-old child emperor who ruled from 1868-1912 to define the goals of his reign. The pursuit of these goals transformed Japan and had a particular impact in the context of Japanese antiques. Artists and artisans who had created netsukes, swords, furniture and exquisite lacquer ware Inros suddenly found themselves out of work. Some turned to making items for the export trade and found that their talents were well suited to creating cane handles. In the 1880s Orientalism became the rage in Great Britain and France, and exotic Japanese canes and cane handles were eagerly snapped up.