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  • Place of origin:

    Kyoto (made)

  • Date:

    1700-1800 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Brocaded silk, backed with silk

  • Credit Line:

    Given by the Misses Alexander through The Art Fund

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This panel was originally part of a costume worn by an actor in a Nô performance. Nô is a traditional Japanese dance drama with a poetic text that is sung to the accompaniment of three drums and a flute. All the performers are male, and the actor in the leading role wears a mask. The costumes are heavy and stiff. Their emphatic designs suit the slow, deliberate movements of a Nô performance, which takes place on a virtually bare stage. This panel would have been part of a costume known as a‘karaori’; it would have been worn by an actor playing a female role. The pattern of chrysathemums, pine shoots, bellflowers and bushclover has been woven with long floating wefts that look almost like embroidery.

Physical description

Panel of silk, made from several rectangular panels of brocaded silks of various sizes. The pattern, which consists of a close arrangement of floral motifs (including pine shotts, chrysanthemums, bush clover and bellflowers), is the same on each panel, but two different colour schemes are used. The ground of one group is greeen shaded to a rust colour and the other is green shaded to cream. The panel is brocaded in blues, greens, white, orange and mauve and has some gold thread. It is backed with purple silk.

Place of Origin

Kyoto (made)


1700-1800 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Brocaded silk, backed with silk


Length: 140.5 cm, Width: 138 cm

Object history note

From a Nô costume.

Descriptive line

Panel of brocaded silk, Kyoto, Japan. 1700-1800


Silk (textile)



Subjects depicted



Textiles; Stage costumes


East Asia Collection

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