This Hand embroidered and beaded Kalaga Tapestry featuring a Warrior riding an
elephant is antique Burmese from the late 1800's to early 1900's. It is
unmounted. There are a few beads missing in the edge trim shown in photos and
sequin damage to a small section of the bottom left foot of the elephant on the
left. Please see all photos for full description and ask for more photos if
needed. This piece measures 24" by 24". It is in original antique as in found
Estate condition, I have not cleaned it at all. Gorgeous piece of hand work! I
think the best way to ship this is flat but I can also roll it with cotton
batting to protect the beads and put in a tube but if you have another
suggestion please let me know.
Kalaga (Burmese) is a heavily embroidered appliqué
tapestry made of silk, flannel, felt, wool and lace against a background made
of cotton or velvet indigenous to Burma (Myanmar). The word kalaga, which means
curtain," comes from the Burmese language, although Burmese refer to such
tapestries as shwe gyi do; lit. "gold thread embroidery").
These tapestries use a sewing technique called shwe gyi
This art form emerged during the Konbaung dynasty in the mid-19th century and
reached its zenith during the reign of Mindon Min, when velvet became
fashionable at the royal court.
In a typical tapestry, padded figures are cut from various types of cloth and
sewn onto a background, usually red or black cloth to form an elaborate scene,
traditionally from Burmese classical plays (e.g. Ramayana, Jataka).
The figures are sewn using a combination of metallic and plain threads and
adorned with sequins, beads and glass stones.
Kalaga" is the traditional name for embroidered tapestries from Myanmar
Burma). This style comes from the Mandalay region and the tradition goes back
more than a century.
They are generally made from linen, silk, velvet and cotton adorned with plain
and metallic threads, metal sequins, beads and glass "stones."
Kalagas commonly depict stories from the Jataka (Buddha's journey towards
enlightenment) and the Ramayana (Hindu epic Journey of King Rama) as well as
historical scenes, lucky animals and signs of the zodiac. Like the decorations
you might see in an ornate Burmese temple, Kalagas are awash in colorful and
Most Kalagas are best hung in a frame but not under glass so that the detail
and texture can be fully appreciated. They can also be hung as-is without a
I use standard industry quality descriptions for vintage and antique items but
if you have questions please just ask. Most of my items come out of estates on
Martha's Vineyard and New England. The island of Martha's Vineyard where I have
lived on and off for the past 30 years is home to many old original families of
sea captains and sailors so fascinating things come up when there are estate
sales. Please check my other listings. I try to do a lot of research and give
good descriptions but I am not an expert in everything so please ask questions
or if you know something about a piece and are willing to add your input into
my listings please contact me!
I am happy to combine shipping on multiple items if possible. I will ship
internationally but please contact me for the shipping cost before bidding.
Paypal payment required within 3 days of auction close. 6.25% sales tax on
bidders from Massachusettes.Please check my other new listings over the next
couple of days. Returns are welcome if item is not as described, refund for
item cost only. I take very detailed photos and give good descriptions. Please
see all pics and enlarge to see details. Ask me any questions before bidding.
If an item is returned that was listed with free shipping the refund will be
minus the actual shipping costs.