Buddhist altar cover (uchishiki)

Edo period
18th or 19th century

Object Place: Japan


Height x width: 26 1/2 x 22 1/2 in. (67.3 x 57.2 cm)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Silk satin-weave ground with silk and gilt paper strip discontinuous supplementary patterning wefts tied down with supplementary warps in twill-weave (nishiki)

Not On View


Asia, Textiles and Fashion Arts



Buddhist altar cloth (uchishiki) with design of chrysanthemum (kiku) and paulownia (kiri) in blue, pink, green, white and brown silk and metallic gold discontinuous supplementary patterning wefts on a red silk satin ground; lined with red and blue iridescent plain-weave silk. The cloth is made up of two lengths stitched together.


By 1911, purchased by William Sturgis Bigelow (b. 1850 - d. 1926), Boston [see note 1]; 1911, gift of Bigelow to the MFA. (Accession Date: August 3, 1911)

[1] Much of Bigelow's collection of Asian art was formed during his residence in Japan between 1882 and 1889, although he also made acquisitions in Europe and the United States. Bigelow deposited many of these objects at the MFA in 1890 before donating them to the Museum's collection at later dates.

Credit Line

William Sturgis Bigelow Collection