This is a rare and unique example of a Japanese man’s “Nagajuban” or Under-Kimono. The fine silk has been handwoven, hand stenciled, and hand painted by an extraordinary artist. The Nagajuban itself is a remarkable illustration of how much artistic effort the wealthy and noble individuals in Japanese society expected from their daily wear.
The combination of artistic efforts that were required to produce this exceptional Kimono took enormous time, labor and skill. The majority of the Kimono has been painstakingly hand stenciled in an intricate overall plaid (“Koshijima”) pattern. Superimposed upon the plaid are two exquisitely hand painted and signed depictions of characters from the famous Japanese children’s Legend of Yamamba. In this story, Yamamba translates as “Mountain Crone.” She is a sorcerer found in Japanese folklore who preys on travelers who have become lost in her wooded lair, and who has often been blamed for missing children. Despite her predatory nature, Yamamba has a benevolent side: she raised the orphan hero Kintaro (who became the famous warrior Sakata no Kintoki) who, in this illustration, saved the lives of a mother bear and her cub during a massive storm by pulling an enormous tree out by its roots and laying it across a stream so they could pass to safety. Pregnant women still pray to the Kami (gods) to give birth to a child as beautiful and strong as Kintaro.
The attention to detail is outstanding, while the painting itself has been accomplished through the “Rice Paste Resist” process, which involved painting out all but one color with rice paste and repeating this process for each color that was applied. Only natural dyes and pigments were used throughout: the blue representing one of the most basic color sensations shared by all mankind from the sky to the waters of the earth; and taupe, the color of earth itself.
It is obvious that this garment belonged to a man of high social standing and wealth as a Nagajuban was intended to be worn under another Kimono at home. An individual who could afford to hide such a magnificent Artwork was indeed blessed with abundance.
A Certificate of Authenticity is included.
TTAC will personally pack and ship via UPS at company expense within the continental U.S.