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July 3, 2014

P1050136a new exhibit at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

is a visual treat

actually two exhibits

“From Geisha to Diva” a stunningly beautiful collection of kimono and artifacts once owned by Ichimaru

famous 20th century geisha and recording artist


and “Kimono – Japanese Culture in its Art Form”

a private collection from Japan


It is impossible to choose a favorite

P1050148kimono and obi

P1050137layers of techniques – shibori, embroidery and paste resist

P1050149shamisen  and  koto

in the background , the blue and gold kimono

P1050151and a coordinating obi

P1050142gold thread used in a subtle block pattern

P1050178lavishly in a wedding kimono


and possibly, as a weaver, my favorite

P1050169an obi woven in the tsume tsuzure tapestry technique


 taking a year to weave

but wait, there is more

P1050181 in the bingata style of pattern

P1050180unusual embroidery design on an obi

P1050140and an interesting kimono


there is so much more – my mind is still whirling a day later

another visit is called for

(click on any of the pictures to enlarge)

19 Comments leave one →
  1. July 14, 2014 11:34 am

    What a stunning kimono exhibit! I wish I lived further north so I could see it. I remember Victoria being so beautiful this time of year, but haven’t been up in ages.


    • July 14, 2014 11:47 am

      theArdentThread – the exhibition is marvellous, the best I’ve seen anywhere including Japan. the Victoria Weaver’s and Spinner’s Guild is hosting the ANWG conference at the University of Victoria in 2017. I will be putting updates on my blog – starting soon. website is


  2. July 7, 2014 3:35 am

    Speaking about slow cloth! People who made all this had different concept of time…Amazing. Lucky you who can go and see it! (my favorite is tsume tsuzure obi)


    • July 7, 2014 7:55 am

      Alfia – truly amazing – and sad because not only is it not being done in Japan any more, there are few people with the skills and it isn’t being taught.


  3. Judi Bushby permalink
    July 4, 2014 3:59 pm

    What an amazing exhibition. How lucky are you. I too would be repeating the visit, possibly several times. Enjoy!


    • July 4, 2014 4:08 pm

      Judi – it is a small gallery but has the second largest collection of Asian art in Canada, has had some truly amazing donations and a very knowledgeable curator.


  4. July 4, 2014 10:08 am

    Thanks for the beautiful pictures. if only i could see this exhibition, lets hope it decides to travel to the U.K.
    Also just to let you know , thanks for the info previously, i am attending one of Brian Whiteheads workshops in Japan in October , im so excited x


    • July 4, 2014 11:38 am

      Netty – I very much doubt that this is a travelling exhibit. Oh, how wonderful – I’m excited for you. Have a wonderful time. 🙂


  5. July 4, 2014 4:30 am

    I know absolutely nothing about kimonos and obis but you do a great job of showing the variety of gorgeousness at this show!


    • July 4, 2014 8:59 am

      Kerry – both the kimono and obi are used as a canvas on which to work some of the most breathtaking art seen in any culture.


  6. July 4, 2014 1:30 am

    thanks for sharing. we want more!


  7. Lis permalink
    July 4, 2014 12:18 am

    STUNNING !!!!


  8. July 3, 2014 7:53 pm

    Oh my, I predict an outing for the Quimper Hittys coming up!


  9. July 3, 2014 3:37 pm

    I’m loving those album covers!


  10. July 3, 2014 11:31 am

    Oh, I must go to see these shows! I have had the book on Geisha Diva Ichimaru for a few years, what a treat it will be to see the kimono in real life!


    • July 3, 2014 12:42 pm

      Heather – make sure you have lots of time, if it works out I’ll come with you. Once is not enough.


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