I've seen thousands and thousands of pieces of Japanese katazome indigo stenciled cloth. I don't get too excited.
Only a well-drawn stencil, a cleverly designed stencil, a rare motif, exceptional indigo color and often a nostalgic stencil a friend or old student has cut can make me pause, examine and think.
I picked up this Japanese butterfly patterned cloth at Morita Antiques in Tokyo a few years back. Butterflies would not make it on a list of favorite motifs but the clever use of other natural motifs set in the wings was so elegant yet humble. The use of soot to get the gradations of grey to black and the delightful shades of faded blue made it irresistible.
Pre-industrialised poetry. Before electricity.
He looked at it with disbelief.