Yorke Antique Textiles

A collection of antique and vintage textiles from around the world

Item Details
Late Edo (1825-1868)
A chirimen silk fukusa featuring a unique and wondrous scene of fifteen young and old minogame turtles, some ascending skyward. Yuzen-dyeing and gold metallic thread embroidery highlights. Very good condition. 25" x 28". The minogame is a Japanese mythological animal - with a life span of 10,000 years - that is part turtle, part dragon, symbolizing longevity and good luck. The name 'minogame' translates to 'raincoat turtle', referring to the growth of vegetation or seaweed which gradually covered its back as it grew older, making it look as if it was wearing a peasant's straw raincoat. Some say that the minogame is the servant of the Dragon Empire beneath the sea. Minogame are popular subjects in Japanese art iconography, however, the imagery of minogame on this fukusa is both unique (ascending skywards) and superlative in terms of concept and execution.
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