Wedding futonji (bedding cover)
Rice paste resist, hand painting, dyes, pigments, sumi ink

The elderly couple depicted here are Jo and Uba, the central characters in the Noh play Takasago. Known for their devotion to one another, they make the perfect motif for a wedding futonji. Other auspicious symbols appropriate to a wedding are the paired cranes, said to live one thousand years, the paired tortoises, said to live ten thousand years, and the ever-green pine, a symbol of resilience. At the borders, the scrolling vines, on which new tendrils spring continuously from older ones, symbolize fertility and the continuity of the family line. For the delicately rendered features of Jo and Uba, see the thumbnail below.