Two entirely different patterns exist on this finely hand woven Summer Silk Obi, dominated by the very rare depiction of the female spirit, Hannya.
This dramatic and unusual, handwoven, Silk “Fukuro” Obi, or Japanese sash, has one side patterned with the figure of Hannya (a character in the Noh Theatre), while the reverse has the distinctive swirling cloud and family crest. A Fukuro Obi is worn for formal and semi-formal occasions. It is an elegant Silk Gossamer known as “Karami Ori,” a member of the gauze family. This Obi represents the most intricate of these weaves, the “Ro,” which is distinguished by strips of densely woven material separated by an open weave. The secret behind this fine open weave fabric creates a strong, beautiful, and cool “Summer Silk.” This magnificent Obi could only have been worn for 3 months of the summer season: June, July and August. The overall shade of blue along with the swirling of the clouds contributes to a light, airy, summer feeling which this obi intended to impart.
The unusual characteristic of this type of Obi is that it has an overall motif on one side, while the reverse side is more plain in terms of decoration, although exquisite in terms of the silk weaving. The more decorative side (see photo left) has been elaborately hand stenciled with the Mask of “Hannya,” the revengeful Female Spirit (demon) with horns, open mouth and sharp fangs often used in the Noh Theatre. As a figure of the jealous female, Hannya becomes the archetype found in classic Japanese literature. The Hannya is the most fearsome of the Japanese mythic demons reminiscent of the western saying “Hell hath no fury as a woman scorned!”
The reverse side has been stenciled with the Family Crest or “Mon” of the “Tomoe” (Comma Shape). In Japan, the Tomoe Pattern became fashionable around the 10th or 11th century. It eventually became the representative symbol of Hachiman, the god of war, assuming both religious and martial qualities. Only a woman of great wealth and high social rank could have afforded an obi of this quality, meant to be worn for such a short period of time.
A Certificate of Authenticity is included.
TTAC will personally pack and ship via UPS at company expense within the continental U.S.