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 Post subject: Iban Bidang Deer Pattern
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2004 11:26 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2003 7:27 pm
Posts: 53
Location: USA
An Iban Bidang from my collection, Approx. 44 cm x 110 cm, mixture of dyes, early 20th Century, Not sure of exact region. 2 more Iban textiles to come later.
Best, Richard


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu May 27, 2004 11:29 pm 
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another picture


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2004 2:49 pm 
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Richard

A very nice weaving. What makes you say 'deer' pattern and which bit is a deer? I find it hard to look at a bidang shown with the warp shown vertically since the textiles are conceived to be worn with the warp horizontal, wrapped around the body as a skirt. I take it that all four photos shown before my post are of the same bidang?

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PostPosted: Sun May 30, 2004 11:56 pm 
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Location: USA
Hello All,

I stated the pattern as a "Deer Patern" as this is what I was told by a the origional collecter in Sarawak. He has been collecting for a number of years and will be the first to admit that many of these textiles and their meanings have become black holes and it may be a hard stretch for the western eye to literally see a deer, snake, tiger etc in many of the traditional patterns. Anyway, if you check the literature, you can get into some of the debates about patterns and their names. Most names have been lost over time and many just provide a point of reference as many textiles combine a variety of patterns. Even the term "Bidang" has become controversial as to the reference in the Iban languages. You may be able to correct what may be a missunderstanding on my part. I realize that the textiles were designed to be worn with the warp horizonal,. However, I always understood that the orientation of the pattern typically if not always follows a verticle orientation. Is this not true? A similar debate can be found when trying to discern the front side vs the back side of a tampan. I really enjoy all of the comments and look forward to more information. Best, Richard


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2004 10:01 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jul 02, 2003 9:33 pm
Posts: 74
Location: Los Angeles, California, USA
From my understanding, despite that fact that Iban woman's skirts are worn horizontally, they are woven, designed, and read vertically. Of course some designs can be viewed either way, but often it is obvious that certain designs are best read vertically. Seems odd, I will admit.

I will have to get a collector of Iban skirts to join this forum as he has the largest collection in the world (I believe) with some 1200 plus examples. He has types I did not even know existed and has spent years trying to answer these questions. He should have some definite feedback on Iban woman's skirts. I also prefer to use the term skirt or mini-skirt as the usage of "bidang" and "kain kepat" just don't seem to be proper term in every context.

Tampans do have a front and back, by the way.

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