We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.

🛈 Find out what you need to know before visiting


'Phaa hom lai' (sleeping blanket) with six lozenge shapes and figures

20th century


Unknown Artist

No image
  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Sam Nuea Laos
    Cultural origin
    Tai Nuea people
    20th century
    Media category
    Materials used
    cotton, natural indigo dye; continuous supplementary weft weaving
    171.5 x 87.5 cm (irreg.)
    Gift of John Yu, in memory of George Soutter 2012. Donated through the Australian Government Cultural Gifts Program.
    Not on display
    Accession number
  • About

    The Tai Neua are a sub-group of the Tai language family. The Tai live in a broad region stretching from Eastern India to Southwestern China and Northern Vietnam. Before the easy availability of printed cotton, Lao-Tai women produced all the textiles for the home, including mattresses, pillows, clothing, and decorative pieces. The blankets are made of at least two pieces of fabric separately woven on a backstrap loom (instead of using a wooden frame, the loom is held taut by a strap that passes around the weaver’s back). Blankets are necessary as the nights can be cold in the highlands of Laos.

    Sleeping blankets consist of two or three pieces of cloth joined together and framed and backed by a piece of plain fabric, as can be seen in this textile. The warps and wefts are white, and the decorative motifs are composed of indigo-dyed supplementary weft yarns.

    Asian Art Department, AGNSW, February 2012.