A Length of Arashi Shibori and Sparrows: Birds in Rain
mid twentieth century
50" x 12", 127 cm x 30.5 cm
This is a length of well-used, indigo dyed arashi shibori cotton which has been over dyed with stenciled sparrows.
The cotton was probably once part of a yukata or a casual, unlined summer kimono, and it shows that it has been worn hard by its overall surface patina, its very faint staining and by the small tear to the top of the cloth, shown in a detail photograph, attached.
At some point in its life, perhaps at the time of manufacture, but not necessarily, images of sailing sparrows were hand stenciled on to the cloth in a black dye using a technique called surikomi.
As arashi means storm, one can attribute unintended meaning to the patterns on this cloth as sparrows in a rain storm, although that is only prose and probably not what the dyer intended.
A curious length of old shibori and one with a great deal of charm.