batik Indonesia-A “Dutch batik” exhibition in Cirebon Batik Indonesia.Batik, a technique of dying fabrics using a wax-resistant technique, has been part of the archipelago’s rich culture for hundreds of years.
The technique can be found throughout Indonesia, and many of the country’s regions now boast their own particular styles and motifs. For those new to batik, it can be hard to tell which designs come from where.
batik Indonesia A chance to get a crash course on batik is currently being offered at the Tugu Hotel in Malang, East Java, courtesy of the Batik Belanda and Exclusive Silver Jewelry exhibition.
Unlike in previous years, when the hotel exhibited various batik designs such as Batik Peranakan, Batik Lawean, and Kain Tenun, this year the Batik Belanda exhibition is highlighting products from the colonial era when European culture strongly influenced batik makers.
While Batik Belanda roughly translates to “Netherlands Batik”, the batik on display actually originated in Indonesia. Locals at times call it Batik “Ala Kompeni”, with “Kompeni” widely understood to be the Indonesian adaptation of Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie – the Dutch East India Company, which arrived in the archipelago several centuries ago.
batik Indonesia One of the most common motifs of Batik Belanda is buketan, which is derived from the word bouquet. The motif depicts a range of bouquets of European tulips and roses. Back in the colonial era, pieces of Batik Belanda sometimes depicted scenes from European folklore.
Anita, the guide at the exhibition, said that during the colonial era many Dutch women fell in love with the beauty of batik. They wore it and even created their own batik styles, the patterns of which tended to be more colorful.
It was Sir Stamford Raffles,the British administrator whose name resonates throughout both the Malacca Straits and the field of natural science, who introduced Batik Belanda to Europe by sending fabrics made by Indonesian artisans to England.
Later on, the batik was mass-produced for the benefit of Indonesian-European traders.
batik Indonesia Some famous traders included Mejuffrous (Miss) Von Franquemont and Mevrow (Mrs.) Van Zuylen, whose names have been used to identify some types of Batik Belanda. The name Franquemont became Batik Prankemon, while Van Zuylen became Batik Pansellen.
The Batik collection showcased in the hotel’s magnificent Tirta Gangga room is quite unique, and Anita’s generosity even extended to her showing The Jakarta Post Travel a creative way to wear batik as a sarong.
Batik makers get their inspiration from a seemingly endless array of subjects, which include daily activities, nature, folklore and respective regions’ animals.
The exhibition includes other types of batik aside from Batik Belanda, including Batik Pesisir, a type of batik from the coastal cities of northern Java famous for its vibrant patterns, which are strongly influenced by Javanese, Arab and Dutch cultures.
During the colonial era, this particular batik was worn not only by Indonesians but also became a favorite among Chinese descendants of the Dutch colonists.
Another impressive collection is that of Batik Cirebon, created by batik maestro Liem Ping Wie. His batik patterns were inspired by European and Chinese cultures, with some combining the Pekalongan floral pattern with distinctively Chinese images of phoenixes, fish and butterflies.
batik Indonesia One of Liem’s descendants, Liem Poo Hien, from the fourth generation of the family, runs the family’s batik business. However, you will not find their products in commercial markets or boutiques. Liem’s handmade works remain exclusive, with one piece of batik usually taking about four to six months to complete. Prices start from Rp 5 million per piece.
batik Indonesia The Shanghai Noon Boutique-presented Batik Belanda and Exclusive Silver Jewelry exhibition runs from April 20 to May 5 in the Tirta Gangga Room, Tugu Hotel on Jl. Tugu No. 3, Malang, East Java.