The Art and Evolution of Japanese Fashion

(In association with The Khalili Collections)
  1. Edited by Anna Jackson
  2. With additional texts by Nagasaki Iwao
  • ISBN 9780500518021
  • 30.00 x 24.00 cm
  • Hardback
  • 320pp
  • 400 Illustrations, 350 in colour
  • First published 2015

A lavish survey of the Khalili Collection’s world-renowned holdings of over 200 garments spanning 300 years of Japanese textile artistry

‘A dazzling demonstration … offers fascinating examples of East/West dialogue’ – World of Interiors
'A collection of exceptional essays expertly edited'– The Business of Fashion
‘A joy to behold’– The Lady

The form of the T-shaped, straight-seamed, front-wrapping kimono has changed very little over the centuries, yet the collection reveals an astonishing variety of designs. In Japanese dress it is the surface decoration that is important and indications of gender, age, status, wealth and taste are expressed through the choice of colour and motif.

The kimono presented here convey the remarkable creativity of designers who produced works of art that would enfold the wearer. The enormous range of patterns were executed in a complex combination of techniques, with some garments requiring the expert skills of a number of different artisans.

The Khalili Collection includes formal, semi-formal and informal kimono, underkimono and jackets, worn by women, men and children. Represented are the sophisticated garments of the samurai elite and the affluent merchant classes of the Edo period (1603–1868), the shifting styles and new colour palette of Meiji-period dress (1868–1912) and particularly the bold and dazzling kimono of the Taisho- (1912–26) and early Sho-wa (1926–89) eras, which utilized innovative techniques and drew fresh inspiration from both past traditions and the modern world.

Here, an international team of authors examine the art and evolution of the kimono in the historical context of the seventeenth to the twentieth centuries, under the editorship of Anna Jackson, Keeper of the Asian Department at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

    Preface – Professor David Khalili
    Introduction – Nagasaki Iwao

I Edo (1603–1868)
Governing, spending and wearing in imperial Japan – Timon Screech
Kimono in the Edo period – Anna Jackson

II Meiji (1868–1912)
The Meiji era: The Ambiguities of Modernization – Christine M. E. Guth
Kimono in the Meiji period – Anna Jackson

III Taisho/Showa (1912–1950)
Delirious Japan: Politics, Culture and Art – Kendall H. Brown
Kimono in the Taisho and Showa periods – Anna Jackson

    Notes, Bibliography, List of kimono, Author biographies, Acknowledgments

Anna Jackson (editor) is Keeper of the Asian Department at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. She has published widely on many aspects of Japanese textiles and dress, and on the cultural relationship between Asia and the West.

Kendall H. Brown, Professor of Asian Art History, School of Art, California State University, Long Beach
Christine M. E. Guth, Senior Tutor, Royal College of Art, London
Nagasaki Iwao, Professor of Apparel Science, Kyoritsu Women’s University, Tokyo
Timon Screech, Professor of the History of Art, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Nasser D. Khalili has formed one of the world’s most outstanding private collections of traditional Japanese kimono. The Khalili Collections also include Japanese arts of the Meiji period (1868–1912), the arts of the Islamic world (700–2000), Swedish textiles (1700–1900), Spanish damascened metalwork (1850–1900), enamels of the world (1700–2000), Aramaic and Bactrian documents (400 BC–AD 700) and Hajj and the arts of pilgrimage (700–2000). Together, the eight collections comprise some 25,000 works and are fully catalogued in an ongoing series of over 88 volumes, of which over 70 have already been published. Current list of published titles