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Kesa (Formerly Nō Costume)

A work made of silk; twill weave with supplementary patterning wefts.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of silk; twill weave with supplementary patterning wefts.


18th century, Edo period (1615–1868)



About this artwork

The fabric of this kesa was made from N̄ costume material probably woven at Nishijin, in Kyoto, for a wealthy samurai for a private theater. The allover pattern of colorful chrysanthemums was created in the kara-ori technique favored for N̄ costume fabrics, in which the long silk weft floats forming the pattern resemble embroidery. As with this kesa, upon the death of the owner the garment would have been donated by the family to her temple as a prayer offering to protect the deceased’s soul, thus also bringing honor to the family for making the gift.


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Kesa (Formerly Nō Costume)


Japan (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

Made 1701–1800


Silk; twill weave with supplementary patterning wefts


109.2 × 178.1 cm (43 × 70 1/8 in.)

Credit Line

Bequest of Henry C. Schwab

Reference Number


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Extended information about this artwork

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