Kimono, East and West in the Textile Museum of Prato

Straight lines, long sleeves and wide belts characterize the traditional dress of the rising sun. An exhibition explores the points of contact between Japanese culture and European avant-gardes and the refined fantasies that result

Lively and colourful: This is how the fifties present themselves kimono male and female protagonists from the first half of the twentieth century along with woodcuts, prints, paintings and fabrics from the exhibition KIMONO – Reflections of Art between Japan and the West probably at the end of April in the Textile Museum in Prato. The project intends to draw attention to the economic-cultural relations between Europe and Japan in the mid-16th century, which were then the mutualcontamination of art and fashion. Both the so-called “Japonism” and Westernization are expressed forcefully in the artifacts shown in the first section of the exhibition, finding a unique formality in the ukiyo-e woodblock prints depicting women in kimono, faithfully between linearism and sensuality through the West depicted artists. In the second section, however, the audience discovers the complex textile and decorative techniques of the Japanese tradition (Nishiki, Yuzen, Shibori and Kasurijust to name a few) thanks to the precious kimonos of collection Private Manavello, grouped by themes and ornaments. On the garments, symbols and languages ​​of Japanese culture merge with the European artistic avant-garde, with obvious references to Matisse, Klimt, the Futurists and Kandinsky. The tour of the exhibition concludes with the core of limono, which is related to the theme of technological discoveries of Western industry and the wartime of World War II. Here are the pictures.


Even if the word kimon it literally means “thing to wear”, behind this simple translation hides a world of symbols and signs that tell of the legendary Japanese tradition. Precious fabrics are transformed into “paintings” in which every printed detail tells the historical epoch, social conditions and taste of the wearer. A charm that has not left the Treviso area indifferent Lydia Manavellowhich for years has been collecting kimonos made between the second half of the 19th and the first half of the 20th century and today boasts a remarkable collection of traditional clothing and objects, protagonists of various pro-oriental exhibitions and/or events dedicated to the Bel Paese are organized.

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Valentina Muzi

Valentina Muzi (Rome, 1991) graduated from the GV Catullo Language High School, gained experience abroad and specialized in French and Spanish with DELF and DELE advanced courses. Her passion for art led her to enroll in the Faculty of Historical-Artistic Studies at La Sapienza University in Rome, earning a degree in History of Contemporary Art while doing an internship at the MLAC – Museum and Laboratory of Contemporary Art of the At At the same time, he attended an Executive Masters in Management of Cultural Heritage at the Sole24Ore Business School in Rome. Since 2016 she has carried out PR activities, catalog translations, writing of critical texts and independent curating activities. Since 2017 he has been working as a critical and financial journalist for industry magazines. He is currently a member of the Strategic Advisory Board of the non-profit cultural association Arteprima, where he held the role of Social Media Manager and is the organizational leader of the Arteprima Academy platform.

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