Sake-swilling imps, Buddhist saints in the form of pop-up dolls, turtles trailing seaweed as longevity symbolswelcome to the engaging imagery of Japanese e-gasuri, or picture ikat cloth. Japanese weavers, like their counterparts in South, Southeast, and Central Asia, mastered the art of ikat, or the resist-dyeing of patterns into yarn before it is woven into cloth. Kasuri is the name of a rustic type of Japanese ikat cloth, almost always dyed deep blue with indigo. E-gasuri designates kasuri cloth with pictorial motifs.
Fowler in Focus: Japanese Pictorial Ikats from the Krauss Collection features approximately thirty cloths selected from a collection of more than two hundred e-gasuri generously donated to the Fowler by Dr. Jeffery Krauss of Potomac, Maryland.