Monday, November 19, 2018

CEREMONIES AND CELEBRATIONS: TEXTILES AT THE USC PACIFIC ASIA MUSEUM


HERE'S THE HAT EDGED IN SEAL FUR











LOOK AT ALL THIS GORGEOUS STUFF!
THIS IS A QING DYNASTY CHINESE WEDDING JACKET AND SHIRT.
C. 1860. 

Here's how this week's arts and culture column begins:

The USC Pacific Asia Museum, which includes representative examples of art from Asia and the Pacific Islands spanning more than 4,000 years, is just west of Old Town Pasadena.

To step into the courtyard, hard to do by busy Los Robles Avenue, is to step into a quieter, more ancient world. Green-glazed roof tiles, pagoda windows, decorative archways. The faint whiff of incense.

Through Jan. 6, 2019, the museum is featuring a splendid exhibit: “Ceremonies and Celebrations,” comprising textile treasures from its permanent collection. Because of their fragile nature, the treasures are displayed sparingly.

The exhibit is arranged by themes of identity and meaning rather than geography. So India mingles with Bhutan mingles with China mingles with India and beyond.

Upon entering, you’re greeted by a fantastic outfit that turns out to be a fireman’s jacket. Geometrically cut and styled out of a heavy mesh velvet fabric, the colors are indigo blue and taupe, and the back features a large insignia identifying the man’s brigade.

From pre-modern Japan, the jacket was worn with close-fitting trousers, gloves and a hood, marking the wearer out as a practitioner of his honorable livelihood. When fighting a fire, the jacket was worn inside out to reveal an unadorned side and first soaked to protect against embers and flame.

Once the fire was extinguished, the fireman again reversed the jacket as a sign of success.

Who doesn’t want to know such things! And who wouldn’t want to wear this jacket — sumptuous, stylish, classic, and classy — on, say, a Sunday morning while reading in bed?


READ THE WHOLE PIECE HERE.


THIS IS THE KOREAN FUNERAL GARMENT I PERSONALLY, IF GIVEN THE CHANCE,
 WOULD SEGUE RIGHT INTO THE COFFIN AND BE BURIED IN. 

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