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Japanese Fukusa Gift Cover, Dragon Gate, Kinko on Carp

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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Asian: Japanese: Textiles: Pre 1920: Item # 878872
Asian Art By Kyoko
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Antique Japanese Fukusa (gift cover), Kinko (Ch. Qin Gao) on a giant carp. According to old Chinese legend, only a mighty carp can climb the upstream of the Yellow River where water plunges a hundred feet, turning into a water fall. When it does happen, a carp can turn into a dragon and is able to ascend to heaven. Based on the legend, a task that seems almost impossible to attain is called ‘passing the Dragon Gate’.

Here in this Japanese fukusa, a well dressed man on the red carp replaced Kinko sennin (Taoist immortal from 400 BC China) who showed up from the lake and vanished into the sky. The scene suggests the mighty power of a man and eventual success. This fukusa may have been used for a boy coming to age or another similar occasion. The condition of this fukusa is clean and has no stains. The handles were later added. Kabe-ori (translated to wall-weave) silk, circa, early 1900s. Dimensions: 26" wide x 31 1/2" long (27 3/4" without handle)

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