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A Tamba-fu Boro Fragment

Written on September 10, 2011

This is a small piece of patched Tamba-fu, Tamba-fu being one of the most revered and well-considered of the country textiles.It was woven in the 19th century in Tamba, Kyoto prefecture, of a hand spun cotton warp and a tsumugi silk and cotton weft.   Its colors are distinctive: soft nut brown, undyed white and pale indigo: these colors, in subtle variation, tend to dominate the palette of this simple hand woven cloth.Tamba-fu’s unassuming beauty was elevated by Yanagi Soetsu, “founder” of the Mingei movement in Japan; Yanagi brought international attention to the hand craft of ordinary people, and Tamba-fu, for him,  was of special interest.Were you to visit textile dealers in Japan, you’d quickly realize that Tamba-fu is a precious cloth, both in terms of its esteem as well as its price. Offerings are scant and prices are high.

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  1. Comment by paula:

    thank you for teaching about this amazing fragment. can you give us a sense of the scale of the piece above?

    September 10, 2011 @ 7:55 pm

  2. Comment by velma:

    a beautiful fragment.
    i remember finding the unknown craftsman when i was in my 20s, and savoring every page, the book itself was so beautiful. maybe it’s time to reread it.

    September 14, 2011 @ 6:08 am