Pair of tea caddies, incised with landscape and figure scenes on one side and inscribed with a poem by the renowned inscriber yidao laoren ("old man with a knife") on the other. These tea caddies with landscapes and scenes of everyday life in studies and gardens incised onto elegant, plain tin bodies, demonstrated excellent calligraphic and pictorial technique, and reflected the refined tastes of the period.
When these tin tea caddies were exported to Japan, they were kept by a sencha tea connoisseur in a special room called the mukyoku kan in a wooden box. The inside of the lid of this wooden box was painted with a Bodhidharma figure with red robes. The whole piece is replete with the literati esthetic.