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PostPosted: Sun Jan 10, 2010 6:10 pm 
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Joined: Sat May 09, 2009 1:01 am
Posts: 246
Location: Japan
Hi all, Does anyone else out there have any silk weft ikats from Bangka Island? These textiles are often mislabelled as being from Palembang but if you have ever seen the bright, beautiful, natural colors of Bangka there is no mistaking them for the duller, darker colors of Palembang. Most Bangka ikats are dyed in green, yellow, red and blue. Palembang textiles are usually in darker reds, blues, sometimes a weak yellow and almost never green.

The textiles of Palembang have an abundance of woven patterns in gold supp. The end fields, almost always including the tumpal motifs, and the side borders, were done in gold thread. Palembang was focused more on the gold brocade woven patterns than the weft ikat dyed patterns. Many Palembang silks had no ikat patterns and were done entirely in gold brocade.

Bangka on the other hand was focused on the ikat dyed patterns and sometimes went light on the gold woven patterns. Although the end fields were done in gold brocade, the tumpal or Pucuk Rebung (baby bamboo) patterns in the end fields as well as the side borders were sometimes done in weft ikat. Even in a B&W photo the lack of gold brocade in the side borders and or the pecuk rebung motifs gives away Bangka origins. Even when extensive gold thread is used in the end fields and side borders the beautiful natural colors of green, blue, red and yellow leave no doubt about the Bangka origins. I also think the ikat patterns were tied and woven with more care in Bangka, making them clearer and more precise than in Palembang silks.

The beautiful textiles of Bangka seem to have been made primarily for export and many were sold to the wealthier market in Palembang. The fact that many were found or collected in Palembang may be the cause of the confusion about origin. This was brought home to me one day in Prayer Gallery in Bangkok.

Nim was showing some of her lovely Cambodian weft ikats to a gentleman when I arrived. When I compared them to those of Bangka Island, the gentleman told me that he had lived in Bangka for years as a dealer in pepper, another of Banka's exports, but had never seen such textiles there and didn't even know that they were once produced there.

I believe chemical colors were used in Palembang, as well as in other silk weft ikat production centers such as Malaysia and Sambas, from the latter part of the 19th C. until production ceased in the early part of the 20th C.. Perhaps Adline could tell us more about this. However, I don't think I can remember ever seeing a Bangka silk with chemical colors. I hope other members with silk textiles from Bangka, Palembang, Malaysia or Sambas will post them for comparison. Silk weft ikats from Laos or Cambodia would also fit in and be welcome. The ikating, dyeing and weaving skills that produced these splendid silk textiles has seldom been surpassed!!!

Best Regards, MAC


Attachments:
File comment: Although this silk has a full measure of gold brocade the colors are surely those of Bangka.
_C1I0108 Banka Silk Weft Ikat 2.jpg
_C1I0108 Banka Silk Weft Ikat 2.jpg [ 416.08 KiB | Viewed 4661 times ]
File comment: Note the beautiful greens and the clarity of the ikat.
C1I0109 Banka Silk Weft Ikat 2.jpg
C1I0109 Banka Silk Weft Ikat 2.jpg [ 329.67 KiB | Viewed 4660 times ]
File comment: Here gold thread has been used sparingly and the pecuk rebung and side borders are done in ikat.
_C1I0064 Banka Silk Weft Ikat.jpg
_C1I0064 Banka Silk Weft Ikat.jpg [ 397.28 KiB | Viewed 4661 times ]
File comment: This textile may not be as old as the previous one which may also account for less gold and a simpler ikat.
_C1I0067 Banka Silk Weft Ikat.jpg
_C1I0067 Banka Silk Weft Ikat.jpg [ 321.66 KiB | Viewed 4661 times ]


Last edited by MAC on Mon May 10, 2010 12:05 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:59 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 09, 2006 9:47 am
Posts: 47
Location: Bali Indonesia
That first one is a masterpiece. Gorgeous.

_________________
Susi Johnston
www.macan-tidur-textiles.com
www.susijohnston.com


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 Post subject: Bangka versus Palembang
PostPosted: Fri Oct 05, 2012 7:52 pm 
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Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Hi Mac,

I agree with Susi, that certainly is a masterpiece. As for other pieces from Bangka: I am not one hundred percent certain, but I believe that these two from my collections, items #69 and #70 on www.ikat.us, are from Bangka. That at least is what I was told by the ancient dealer, originally from Sumatra, who sold them to me a few decades ago, and they seem to match your observations on Bangka vs Palembang cloths. The greens for instance are particularly striking. What is your opinion on these?

Peter ten Hoopen


Attachments:
File comment: Pusaka Collection, cloth #70. Probably from Bangka. Or Palembang?
ikat_070.jpg
ikat_070.jpg [ 340.83 KiB | Viewed 2759 times ]
File comment: Pusaka Collection, cloth #69. Probably from Bangka. Or Palembang?
ikat_069.jpg
ikat_069.jpg [ 286.61 KiB | Viewed 2759 times ]

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Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES
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