The strong vertical composition of this woodblock print has an upward pull that’s a brilliant contrast to the horizontal burst of the fully opened iris at the top. You can feel this pull if you start at lower left, with the artist’s signature, and move your eyes upwards along the furled blossom and graceful, slender leaves. You can almost feel the velvety coolness of the rich purple petals of the topmost iris. At lower right, a curling leaf serves as a compositional counterbalance to the heavy blossom above. The artist was known for his stylized, yet realistic nature studies.