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Ruri Kippenbrock


Posts Tagged ‘traditional influence’

Tenugui mumbling Vol.56 – Art of the Samurai

Friday, January 8th, 2010
Art of the Samurai - photo by The Metropolitan Museum of Art

Art of the Samurai - photo by The Metropolitan Museum of Art

I visited the Metropolitan Museum of Art the other day. Sometimes I totally forget that I live in the center of the Art scene. How many times did I visit the Met since I moved to New York? … well… Oh, well…
I read an article about this exhibition which said that it took more than ten years to get together all the art pieces, and finally it’s ready to exhibit in New York this year. As soon as I knew about it, I wanted to go see the collections so badly!

The entrance of the Metropolitan Museum

The entrance of the Metropolitan Museum

The Metropolitan museum is like a HUGE maze. Oh, I should grab a hotdog at the stand in front of the museum. I asked three Met staff members, and finally found the Tisch Galleries where Art of the Samurai exhibition was held.

The armor for the boy samurai Honda Tadataka (1698-1709) - photo by the Met

The armor for the boy samurai Honda Tadataka (1698-1709) - photo by the Met

Starting with Haniwa (terracotta figurine), samurai kabuto (helmet) and Yoroi (armor), swords and sword mounting, robes and the other national important treasures that came from the Kofun era to Edo Period were gathered together. Many familiar samurai names are on the instruction board. My parents love to watch the Japanese historical TV series, and I used to watch the show when I was little. Oda Nobunaga, Asai Nagamasa, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Tokugawa Ieyasu, etc etc…. I can’t believe that these pieces REALLY belonged to them. The strong energy filled the hall, and I could hear the sounds of wind on the battle field, and felt many stories behind these samurai armors…. I was too excited and felt a dizziness.

Mt. Fuji motif - photo by the Met

Mt. Fuji motif - photo by the Met

As I went to next room,?I found the samurai style and materials had changed. It was very interesting to see the pieces had combined cultures, with influence from Western countries, and names like Nanban Gusoku, or Kawari Kabuto which means an exotic armor and helmet. One Jinbaori (surcoat) attracted my eye. It’s made with golden yellow and black wool, with a volcano motif on the back of the coat. It was very interesting to know that Mt. Fuji first came to be used as a motif on craft objects in the Edo Period. As I know, Tenugui culture also had spread ?widely in the Edo period also. The influence from Western cultures and the samurai Art…. evolve style to next century….

That is something I would like to do for my Tenugui…

… to be continued.

From: Ruri

Tenugui mumbling vol.19 – “Traditional Parallels; Tenugui and Klut” collaboration from Sweden – Japanese Design “Gilmore Girls”

Saturday, August 30th, 2008


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The third Episode “Traditional Parallels; Tenugui and Klut” – These photos are from The Osterlens Museum in Sweden. They show us a Swedish way to wear Tenugui – a Japanese tradition evolves to new Swedish Chic!

In centuries gone by in Sweden, the Klut was used as a traditional head cover by married women. In Japan, we have a Tsuno-kakushi (see the picture below) which is a Japanese wedding veil. The bride hides her Tsuno (horn in Japanese) with a white wedding head cover which symbolizes the bride’s resolve to become a gentle and ideal wife.

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Many decades have passed by now, and still we see similar traditional influences in both East and West. I believe that East and West, Men and Women are different, though I hope and believe that we are equal. We have freedom to choose our lives in some countries no matter what gender or your background, but not in every country. I have been fortunate in my life to have a choice how I want to live… and here I am… living in the big apple and introducing Tenugui to you. I hope in the future all children will have these freedoms, wherever they are.

New composition is here from The Gordon School. Please enjoy her stylish Tenugui art!

The Gordon School – composition #11 ? Gilmore Girls

“Gilmore Girls”

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My Tenugui is based on a TV show called “Gilmore Girls”. My designs are representations of the girls on the show ? The “cell phone ban”, Chinese food container, Dragonfly and Coffee cup.

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Students artist wearing “Gilmore Girls”

- to be continued…

From Ruri