Gift cover (fukusa)

late Edo or Meiji era
late 19th or early 20th century

Object Place: Japan


66 x 74 cm (26 x 29 1/8 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Silk satin-weave ground embroidered and couched with silk and gold-metallic thread, hand-painted with gold

Not On View


Asia, Textiles and Fashion Arts



Gift cover (fukusa) with design of an elderly couple (Jô and Uba) standing under a pine tree at the edge of the water, two flying cranes and two tortoises embroidered in green, red, blue, white, brown and black silk and couched with gold-wrapped thread with some hand-painting on a light blue silk satin ground; artist’s seal in the lower right; reddish-orange silk crepe backing and gray and gold tassels at each corner. This subject of this fukusa refers to the Noh play, “Takasago,” which celebrates marriage and longevity, as well as the New Year.


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