12 Fountain Pens
PILOT (NAMIKI) CHINESE ZODIAC SET OF 12 MAKI-E PENS: Twelve maki-e pens depicting the traditional signs of the Chinese zodiac: Rat, Ox, Tiger, Hare, Dragon, Snake, Horse, Sheep, Monkey, Rooster, Dog and Boar, in a variety of lacquer techniques, each signed mint, in twelves boxes with ink bottles, and leaflet, and card outer box. No limitation stated, but uncommon as a set.
In the history of Pilot (Namiki), 2 versions of zodiac fountain pens were made in the past and present. The original version was made of ebonite and decorated with taka maki-e (high relief lacquer and some jim-maki-e (gold dust lacquering), more light weight, flat top and bottom.
Legendary artists who had made these earlier fountain pens include
– Kyusai Yoshida 吉田久斋 (Pig, Rabbit, Ram)
– Hyakusen Murata 村田百川(Rooster,Snake, Ox)
– Masaru Hayashi 林胜(Dog, Monkey, Horse,Tiger)
– Yasunori Sakamoto 坂本康则(Dragon, Rat).
This collection was discontinued since 2007-2008 and replaced by a newer edition of zodiac collection made of metallic brass (kintai); heavier and a little more expensive.
The oriental zodiac is a milestone collaborative work by Namiki’s leading maki-e artists of the early 1990s.
Cfr. Andres Lambrou & Masamichi Sunami, Fountain Pens of Japan, pp. 256 – 257.