This cheerful robe layers high and low felicitous motifs from the avian realm. The roosters, hens, and chicks present a sweet barnyard vision of domestic bliss, and the woven ground features a classical pattern of pine bough and crane associated with stately, celebratory occasions including weddings and the New Year. The red dye is remarkably well preserved for the age of the garment, and even today, its rich color excites the eye as it sets off the tiny grains of scattered bird feed and gold threaded baskets.
Private Collection, New York (until 1949; donated to MMA).
New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Birds in the Art of Japan," February 2, 2013–July 28, 2013.