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Kente Wrapper

A work made of silk, 26 narrow woven strips of warp-stripe plain weave with supplementary patterning wefts; joined; warp fringe.

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  • A work made of silk, 26 narrow woven strips of warp-stripe plain weave with supplementary patterning wefts; joined; warp fringe.

Date:

Early twentieth century

Artist:

Asante
Ghana

About this artwork

The alternating pattern blocks of this kente feature vibrant horizontal and vertical stripes as well as checked, zigzag, and concentric diamond designs that produce a dazzling visual effect. The shimmer of the lustrous silk threads enhances this effect and is believed to offer spiritual protection to the wearer, reflecting evil back upon its source.

Textile companies across the globe have popularized printed fabrics with designs that emulate these complex woven patterns. Printing is faster, less expensive, and results in a lighter weight fabric, however the ubiquity of these reproductions may adversely impact kente weavers, whose work must compete in the textile market with mass produced fabrics.

Status

Currently Off View

Department

Textiles

Culture

Asante

Title

Kente Wrapper

Place

Ghana (Object found in)

Date

Made 1901–1925

Medium

Silk, 26 narrow woven strips of warp-stripe plain weave with supplementary patterning wefts; joined; warp fringe

Dimensions

354.3 × 219.7 cm (139 3/8 × 86 5/8 in.); Maximum strip: W.: 8.9 cm (3 1/2 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. David C. Ruttenberg

Reference Number

1983.193

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email . Information about image downloads and licensing is available here.

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