BORO futon cover, Japan, early Showa (circa 1920), cm 175x183. There is a class of Japanese folk textiles known as boro, which literally translated means "rags" or "ragged." Broadly speaking, boro textiles are the patched, mended and heavily stitched indigo-dyed cotton cloths whose history extends back to the nineteenth century and continues on through the early-to-mid twentieth century, and to fully appreciate they apart from their obvious artistic appeal, one has to delve into their history by understanding something of cotton's cultural significance in Japan. This is not the place to do this, but i deeply encourage those interested in getting a better understanding of the whole thing, to have a look at the excellent article by Stephen Szczepanek, ‘Rags to Riches’ just published on latest issue of hali magazine. As a matter of fact, however, boro textiles prove to be an aesthetically valuable art form, that mostly appeal to collectors of Contemporary Art, as well as to collectors of Tribal and Outsider Art. What we have here is a boro futon cover, made up recycling used happi (working coats) that are first cut into re-usable scraps, and then sewn together to form the futon cover. Maybe it doesn’t look much as the ‘standard’ multi-layered, hyper-patched and –stitched boro we might have seen around in ads or publications. It only had been obtained by joining spare parts from discarded coats, but the ‘accidental’ beauty obtained this way is one of the hallmarks for judging the quality of a boro piece. And this is a quality piece, no doubt. Simply visually arresting.

price:  SOLD