The framing device of a circle in the interior mounting is meant to call to mind a round window through which the bird is seen on a branch of flowering plum just outside.

scroll 13.5 x 35 in

Uguisu in plum

I found this little water color in a used book store in Kyoto. It is dated sixth year of Taisho (1917). I mounted it by slicing a circle in the interior piece of plum-pink habutai silk. I chose uguisu-green silk Shantung for the top and bottom. The ichimonji decorative strip on either end of the pink is an unusual reflective modern pattern (seen in photo at left). The finials are made of actual plum branches with the bark on.

This bird, the uguisu, is usually translated as “bush warbler.” it is as much a harbinger of Spring in Japan as the first robin sighting is in the west.