An Extravagantly Patched Boro Panel: Katazome Cotton
late nineteenth century
60" x 12 3/4", 152.5 cm x 32.5 cm
This is a very beautiful length of indigo dyed cotton boro cloth. It is a deeply dyed fragment from a futon cover, showing a repeat pattern of stencil resist dyed, or katazome, chrysanthemums and paulownia flowers, each of this motifs are very traditional Japanese designs.
The length is rich in patches, there are about 18 in all, and they are of varying sizes, and they are placed all over the surface of this boro cloth, from top to bottom.
This boro textile is heavily starched (starching cottons is not unusual in Japan) so its surface is a bit stiff. As well, there is a faint, overall trace of cotton fibers on the patched surface of this cloth, residue from the cotton batting that was used to fill the piece during its life as a futon cover.
The combination of the many patches, the wonderful pattern, and the deep, indigo color creates a magnificent textile artwork.
Just beautiful--and recommended.