Colorado State University Opens Unique Kimono Exhibit in Gustafson Gallery April 23

A selection from more than 300 traditional Japanese kimonos and other examples of exquisite Japanese textiles will be exhibited at the Gustafson Gallery at Colorado State University from April 23-Sept. 30.

The opening reception for "Kimonos from the Maxson Collection and New Digital Textiles from Japanese Inspiration" is from 4-5:30 p.m. April 23 in the Gustafson Gallery, Room 145 of the Gifford building. The event is free and open to the public.

Items in the exhibit are on loan from the Maxson Collection. The Maxsons lived in Hawaii for a number of years and traveled frequently to Japan. It was during these trips that the kimonos and textiles were purchased.  Many of the kimonos are rare examples of surface design techniques that were created by hand.

Many students in the apparel design program at Colorado State have been inspired by the Maxson Collection kimonos and have created fashion illustrations, designed and produced garments as well as designed and printed textiles. The textile designs are created using computer-aided-design software and printed using a digital textile printer. Some of these digital textiles will be displayed with the kimonos in this exhibit.

"The students have truly been inspired by the unique beauty of these kimonos," said Diane Sparks, professor of design and merchandising at Colorado State. "It is always a treat to look at traditional ethnic clothing outside one’s own culture."

The department has presented several exhibitions of traditional Japanese kimonos throughout the years. Viewers of the exhibit will see the potential for new design work based on traditional Japanese sources of inspiration. In addition, viewers will see that ethnic textiles provide a beautiful window through which to view integral aspects of any given culture.

The Gustafson Gallery is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., including the summer. For more information about this exhibit, call Sparks at (970) 491-5360.

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