Boro - UROBORO - Antique Textiles and Rugs

NUNZIO CRISA COLLECTION
UROBORO
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JAPAN
Boro Panel mounted on frame

Japan, Taisho (circa 1910), 165x34.5 cm


This panel (haba) of thin, indigo dyed cotton, was once a hanten (work coat) then recycled to be part of a futon.  This nicely graphic boro fragment shows a mending patch to cover a slit in the fabric where the collar of the hanten would have been cut and folded.
There is a large swath of verical wear with the cloth almost threadbare (see detail photos), who anyhow are part of the pathos in this beautiful piece.

This fragment with extremely stylish graphic is mounted on a frame to easily hanging of the panel.
Absolutely, not to miss!

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Yogi Boro *
Japan, Meiji (circa 1880), cm 135x81.

Yogi (literally ‘night wear’) can be defined as a ‘sleeping kimono’ or a ‘kimono-shaped bedding’. Because they were large, thick, soft robes, the yogi solved the problem of night time drafts by wrapping all around the sleeper.
It was meant to fit tightly around the shoulders and neck, providing excellent protection against the winter cold.


Considerably wider than an ordinary kimono, the yogi had an extra panel of cloth down the centre of the back. They were always thickly padded with heavy cotton wadding (they might have weighted as much as 15 pounds!), just like a futon. A fundamental component of a bride’s trousseau, it often shows auspicious motifs, all obtained with a freehand paste-resist decoration (tsutsugaki).

The present object was a former yogi that experienced some heavy use, had its padding and the sleeves removed, and was then possibly used as extra bedding cover or to warm up people sitting around the fireplace during the long winter evenings. It had been mended and patched, and these textiles are referred in Japan to as 'boro', or rags.

The outside still displays an impressive ‘tsutsugaki’ design called ‘shochikubai’, or ‘the three winter friends’ a composition made of pine (eternity), bamboo (integrity) and plum (cleverness) blossoms, that all together symbolize vitality and courage. This collage-like construction of Edo and Meiji era hand-spoon and hand-woven fabrics and patches offers us a veritable encyclopedia of cotton indigo from those periods. Condition of course plays no role with ‘boro’, and they should be judged upon their visual impact, mainly. This is surely a truly great object in this respect, and a lovely thing to own,  I would dare to say…

* no more in stock

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Boro panel *

Japan, Taisho (circa 1920), cm 186x37.

There is a class of Japanese folk textiles known as boro, which literally translated means "rags" or "ragged." Broadly speaking, boro textiles are the patched, mended and heavily stitched indigo-dyed cotton cloths whose history extends back to the nineteenth century and continues on through the early-to-mid twentieth century, and to fully appreciate they apart from their obvious artistic appeal, one has to delve into their history by understanding something of cotton's cultural significance in Japan.


As a matter of fact, however, boro textiles prove to be an aesthetically valuable art form, that mostly appeal to collectors of Contemporary Art, as well as to collectors of Tribal and Outsider Art. What we have here is probably a panel from a ‘futongawa’ (futon cover), made up recycling used fabrics all with a stripes design on different shades of indigo. Please note the dense pattern of sashiko stitchings used hold together the different patches. A ‘ rigorous’ item, with a somewhat understated look. A good starting point for a boro collection though.

* no more in stock

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Boro Fabric *

Japan 153 x 156 cm


It is made of wonderful hand woven/ hand spun cotton, and it has very soft and comfortable touch(medium thick).


Its natural ai color is well well worn. and we can enjoy its beautiful ai color gradation. This piece was made of other yogi or furoshiki, and its large kamon part remains.
A wonderful ranru boro.

* no more in stock
ABOUT UROBORO

Is dedicated to Nunzio, my only and best brother I could have had. He was also a friend of mine, and of great help in my life, making me simple hard decisions.
What you find here is his personal collection. Unfortunately, my home is not large enough to contain all, so if you are interested in purchasing any article, please contact me. Some of these articles are already collected by some friends of mine and are no more available. These pieces are marked with a red asterisk.
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ABOUT NUNZIO

Nunzio Crisa
(17/2/1958-14/7/2012).
After the degree in physic he left Milano to Munich, where he got the PhD in Physical Chemistry at the Ludwig-Maximilians Universitaet.
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