PRELUDE TO JAPANESE FASHION
Kimonos of the young grass
Nakano Kazuko Collection of Childrenπs kimonos
24/04/2012 – 28/07/2012
Bibliothèque Forney – Hôtel de Sens
1 rue du Figuier 75004 Paris
■ Suisse, Bâle
16/10/2010 – 02/04/2011
■ Pays-Bas, Leiden
02/06/ – 14/08/2011
2311 GE Leiden
■ Autriche, Linz
07/12/2011 – 09/04/2012
Schlossberg 1, 4020 Linz
textileforum (Allemagne) 04/12/2009
Japan, a country in which sartorial culture occupies a very important place and reaches the height of elegance, has for many millennia born witness to a distinctive taste for children’s clothing.
At a time when the life of a child was often short lived, families, and especially mothers, would transmit all of their care and love to their children through the clothing they had made for them, or that they themselves made by hand.
The patterns that were incorporated into the kimonos, dyed or embroidered are rich in meaning: they can represent good health, rocks for strength, kindness, intelligence, prosperity or even beauty. The typical patterns that appear on children’s kimonos include turtles, cranes, bamboo, pine trees and chrysanthemums, all of which serve as symbols for the aforementioned qualities.
The Kazuko Nakano collection contains several hundred children’s kimonos, ranging from the end of the Edo period to the beginning of the 20th century. Mrs Nakano has build up the collection with care, and with the same love that we give to children and accord to mothers throughout the centuries...
Today, in a world where clothing has become a form of commercial targeting and has lost all signs of motherly love, and even the traces of their handy work, these kimonos remind us of the birthplace, or, in other words, the origin of the real sartorial culture.