Woman's Robe

Robe with vertical bands of yellow, blue, and red abstract designs.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • Robe with vertical bands of yellow, blue, and red abstract designs.

Date:

1840/60

Artist:

Uzbekistan, Bukhara

About this artwork

This woman’s robe exemplifies the long tradition of ikat production in Central Asia, specifically, in Bukhara, Uzbekistan, once an active center along the ancient Silk Road. Among the many uses of ikats was their role as a component of a woman’s dowry. A woman would have worn this robe at weddings and other special occasions, and at her funeral it would have been draped over her bier. The choice of fabric was determined by a woman’s age and status. In general, young women wore bright colors and large patterns, while older women dressed in more sober hues. Most women wore garments made of inexpensive native cotton fabrics, but wealthy women owned robes made of silk and cotton-wefted ikat fabric. Ikat is an ancient technique involving precise and repeated tying (binding) and dyeing of threads or yarns before they are woven. The warp threads are dyed, while the weft threads usually remain solid in color. These threads intersect at right angles during the weaving process; the results are complex patterns in dazzling color combinations that produce a slightly blurred visual effect known by the Persian word abr (“cloud”).

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Textiles

Title

Woman's Robe

Origin

Uzbekistan

Date

1840–1869

Medium

Silk and cotton, plain weave; warp-resist-dyed (ikat); edged with silk twined embroidery

Dimensions

134 × 167.5 cm (52 13/16 × 54 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Guido Goldman

Reference Number

2005.606

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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