A Beautifully Dyed Cotton Shibori Kimono: Fisherman's Festival Garb
mid to late twentieth century
51 1/2" x 47", 131 cm x 119.5 cm
This is a completely shibori dyed, unlined cotton kimono that is said to have been used as a celebratory costume by fisherman, probably worn at a festival--and most likely this is one of many that were made which would have been worn by a group.
The cotton is power loomed and the indigo color is most likely not botanical. This is typical of cotton kimono of this time.
What is wonderful about this kimono are its graphics: the large, oversized kanji or Chinese character that drapes over the shoulder on the front and the back and the large designs that reference the sea--a roundel of waves and a square with a fish-shaped kanji--also wrap around from the back to the front of kimono.
The entire area of the kimono is dotted with kanoko or fawn dappled shibori, so the kimono is completely covered in shibori dyeing which was likely done in the famous shibori town of Arimatsu.
The kimono is in very good, seemingly unused condition and it is a wonderful example of Japanese large-scale graphics as applied to a textile.