One of the great pleasures of immersing oneself
in the Tokyo Quilt Festival, is to dive into the inky blue depths of the "Wa" exhibit, filled with
intricate quilts hand-pieced and hand-quilted, many constructed from vintage indigo fabrics.
Yes, there are shimmering brilliant silk quilts, made from a
grandmother's antique kimono, and there are excursions that range from the
subtle whisper of taupe, to the luxe of beading and gold metallic, but it is the quiet dignity of these indigo quilts that draws me back again and again.
There are many things at this show that express the Japanese aesthetic ...as my
translator says... things that are "very Japanese" in their precision, their visual harmony, their discreet formality. They are a quiet statement about another time when indigo dyeing was a seasonal event, and every mark or woven design in an indigo cloth was carefully
considered and meticulously executed.
The brilliant colors of Japanese pop culture and contemporary design seemed more prevalent at this show, and I felt somehow (without counting) that there were less of the traditional taupe and indigo quilts, compared to previous years.
Japanese quilters and visiting textile collectors go to flea markets and
antique fairs throughout the year, looking for precious vintage cuttings of old
kimonos. Older traditional quilters mix and match these collector items into
new quilts, middle-age quilters might mix them with newer Asian prints, and younger
contemporary quilters often forgo the traditional Asian designs altogether...preferring retro and vintage looks from the 20th century.
In other words, there is something for everyone!
I am posting photos one batch at a time, because I want to make sure that the
quiltmaker's name is included with each image. Every year I see more and more
westerners going to this show and posting photos, but many or most do not make
any note of the artist's name.
You will find either the quiltmaker's name in kanji characters in the corner of the image, or the image will be saved with their name. I encourage anyone who posts photos from this show to include the name of the artist. Hopefully next year they will have more of the names translated into the transliteration of the romaji spelling of the name.
Please enjoy this photo tour of the show, and check back as I add more images over
the next week. In case you missed it, I also have photos of the Snow Monkeys of Nagano.
My Churchill Polar Bear tour group is set for Oct 13-19, (yes, this year!) and the very
limited 14 slots will open up in a couple days when I get the contract signed.
If you wish to receive signup information before it is announced in the newsletter, contact eQuilter Customer Service.
sharing your Passion for Fabric...
Upcoming Quilty Travel:
Mar 24 Quilting Arts TV
May 1-4 SAQA Conference Wash DC
Oct 1 Quilt Exhibit, Rome
Oct 14-19 Polar Bear Tour, Churchill