Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Wagashi

Wagashi are Japanese sweets and I just love them. They are sweet, of course, and so beautiful. If you've never seen any, you have to do an image search in google, and you will see how pretty they are, almost too pretty to eat!
Actually "wa" means "Japanese-style" and "kashi" means "confectionery". Together they become "wagashi".
One of the big challenges in learning Japanese is to master the writing system. I now know my hiragana and katakana pretty well. But of course I am only starting to study kanji.
Anyway, for this quilt, I decided to print some fabric with the word wagashi written in hiragana:
わがし
I tried lots of things, made many test prints, and finally settled on using only the hiragana わ (wa). By the way, "wa" means "Japanese-style", but it also means "peace" and "harmony".

The flavours and shapes of wagashi are often inspired by seasons and flowers. This is why I added this sakura on my quilt.
Merci to my sweet Twelve fellows for this fun series of 20x12 quilts!

9 comments:

Karen said...

Your love of all things Japanese shows in this quilt Françoise, and I'm so happy your following this love by learning the language. The screen printed writing is beautiful.

Helen Conway said...

The little flower immediatly transports me back to the deportment store basement in Kyto where thee were so many delicate sugar confections. How exactly did you put the japanse writing on the quilt? Its beautiful. So soft and delicate.

Gerrie said...

I have always been intrigued by images of wagashi and wondered if they were just pretty or also tasted good. This is a lovely reimagining of wagashi. I love the bit of text that you printed on the fabrics.

Kristin L said...

This looks so Japanese, and so sweet in that classy, not-too-sweet way. I especially love the sakura and little pink petal bits.

Brenda Gael Smith said...

While preparing the website, I've compiled your artist gallery page for the 2012 series. This piece on its own is beautiful but the way it ties together your 2012 series is masterful. And through all of your pieces, your love of all things Japanese comes shining through. Bravo!

Terri Stegmiller said...

I've always been intrigued by Japanese writing. The letters(?) have such wonderful shapes. I think it must take a lot of commitment on your part to take on the learning of all this. Your desire to do it is inspiring. I love the colors you put in this quilt and the writing gives it such beautiful textures.

Terry Grant said...

The text on the fabrics is beautiful! The colors seem both sweet and Japanese-inspired. I knew nothing about Wagashi and so I Googled it. They are so pretty and remind me of old-fashioned marzipan candies, but probably taste quite different. As always your sense of spare, clean design has produced an elegant piece.

Deborah Boschert said...

I also love the beautiful letter shapes. The purple piece looks like it has some reflective quality about it. Is that possible? Your quilting is also so masterful and effective.

Diane Perin Hock said...

Ooh! This is lovely -- it has all of the elements I've come to expect from you... Elegance, simplicity, a sense of Japanese serenity. I love how you have combined the writing and blossom and a beautiful sense of balance and proportion. Perhaps you'll share how you put the characters onto the fabric?