Friday, May 20, 2016

Mood Indigo at SAAM

5/20/16 colored pencils
“Mood Indigo: Textiles from Around the World” is one of the new exhibits at the Seattle Asian Art Museum. Curated mainly from the museum’s permanent collection, the exhibit showcases the many ways indigo dye has been used through the ages by many cultures. Most of us take indigo for granted, wearing jeans every day and thinking nothing of how the fabric obtained that blue hue (though most contemporary jeans are now made with synthetic indigo). But indigo is far more versatile than the blue for jeans – it’s used in clothing, on walls, on beds, and in sacred traditions. Some of my favorite pieces in the exhibit were the kimonos and quilts.

Most of the wall hangings and other textiles weren’t very conducive to sketching. But I found a fascinating costume (a Basinjom mask and gown) made of indigo-dyed cotton, wood, feathers and other materials and worn by Yale art historian Robert Farris Thompson in 1973. It was definitely worth a sketch!

I'm a guest blogger on Pens! Paper! Pencils!

In other news, I was invited by Ian Hedley of the blog Pens! Paper! Pencils! to write a guest post about Urban Sketchers. Please check it out!

A kimono with busy rabbits on it.
The wave pattern on this kimono was one of
my favorites.

Post-museum refreshments: It's mini Frappuccino time!


  1. Beautiful photos of the kimonos! Your sketch of the costume came out the mask. How great that you were invited to do a guest post. I enjoyed reading it.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting on the guest post, Joan! I was thrilled to be invited to write it!

      - Tina


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