Yorke Antique Textiles

A collection of antique and vintage textiles from around the world

Item Details
Late Edo (1800-1850)
A silk tapestry-weave Buddhist uchishiki featuring a phoenix and a lotus pond. Good condition, with staining and holes on the fine silk backing, as well as several discreet 1 cm corrosion holes on the front, near one edge. 26" x 26". The phoenix is endowed with all of the magical qualities of auspiciousness: longevity, resurrection, the solar and alchemical fire, and symbolizes peace and tranquility. The lotus is an important Buddhist motif. Images of the Buddha and other important persons often are shown seated on a lotus throne. The growth of the lotus, with its roots in mud, growing through water, and emerging as a wonderful plant above the water's surface, is seen as an analogy of the soul's path from the mud of materialism to the purity of enlightenment. The 3 stages of the lotus, bud, utpala (mid-blossom) and the full blossoming throne represent the past present and future respectively. There are four colors of lotus recognized in Buddhism: of these, the pink is the supreme lotus, generally reserved for the highest deity, and thus naturally associated with the Great Buddha himself. On this textile there is a deep red color band situated between the celestial sphere of the phoenix and the terrestrial one of the lotus: in Buddhism the color red is believed to have protective qualities; red is the color of powerful rituals and deeds, the color of passion, transmuted to discriminating wisdom.
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