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PostPosted: Fri Jan 08, 2010 4:12 pm 
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Location: Japan
Hi all, Here are some more textiles that break the general rule of weft ikat in silk and warp ikat in cotton. I think they are from Bengkulu Prov. in Sumatra but am not 100% sure. Other Benkulu textiles I have seen, recently on Susan's site Tribal Trappings, had no ikat dyed patterns. They had plain or maybe striped fields with end borders in supp. silver or gold thread. Maybe the ones on Susan's site were silk? Must have another look!

Does anyone else have any textiles like these? Does anyone know if they are from Bengkulu and if so where in the prov. they were made? I hope someone will post other textiles from Bengkulu to compare with these. Are you still watching the forum Susi? You seemed knowledgeable concerning Bengkulu textiles.

Thanks and best regards, MAC


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_C1I0092 Cotton Weft Ikat Bengkulu 2.jpg
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_C1I0093 Cotton Weft Ikat Bengkulu 2.jpg
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_C1I0089 Cotton Weft Ikat Bengkulu.jpg
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_C1I0091 Cotton Weft Ikat Bengkulu.jpg
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 2:11 pm 
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Joined: Tue May 09, 2006 9:47 am
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Location: Bali Indonesia
Gosh, so sorry it's taken a year for me to catch your thread!

Yes, these textiles are from the Bengkulu interior. Probably mid-20th century. The older the examples from this region (generally), the more complex and "legible" are the ikat patterns.

My local informants in the area say that the textiles with weft ikat are for women, and those with warp ikat are for men. Further enquiries to additional sources tend to confirm this.

Yours is a really lovely example of this type, a fairly "pedestrial" but still adat cloth. Not everyday wear. The colour looks especially nice, and so does the condition.

Other textiles with weft ikat in cotton include the cepuk of Bali, and common endek in Bali, both of which are still produced. Pre-WWII weft ikat endek cloths in cotton are extremely uncommon, while silk examples abound.

Keep sending pictures of textiles from your collection. I love seeing them!

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Susi Johnston
www.macan-tidur-textiles.com
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 3:00 pm 
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Location: Bali Indonesia
Bengkulu. I love these.

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 Post subject: Bengkulu warp ikats?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 17, 2010 3:05 pm 
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Location: Japan
Susi, Thanks for your reply and info. I have a number of weft ikats from Bengkulu, all selendangs and all cotton. I can't recall ever seeing a warp ikat from this area. Do you have one you could post for us? Are there any published that I might check out? Do the men's warp ikats have simple dash patterns like the women's?

These simple dash ikat patterns seem very primitive to me and remind me of the weft ikat patterns in cotton textiles from Lombok. Could these patterns be some of the first dyed when the ikat technique was first used to pattern textiles?

Have you seen warp or weft ikat patterns in silk textiles from Bengkulu? Do they still produce ikat textiles there? What about skirts or other types of textiles? I don't really remember seeing anything but selendangs.

Thanks again for your reply and info. I hope to learn more about Bengkulu textiles and perhaps see some other types.

Best Regards, MAC


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 2:34 am 
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Location: Bali Indonesia
I do have a number of textiles from this area with warp ikat (although in most examples only a few threads of ikat). I have seen others.

The warp ikat examples have been identified as men's cloths. In at least one family's traditional practices, these cloths are used for a ritual cleansing/bathing ceremony.

That's about all I know.

The NGA has a few nice examples of this and similar types, and one is clearly identified as a men's shoulder cloth.

All of the textiles in these photos are mine, except for one, which is in a French collection.


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PostPosted: Mon Apr 19, 2010 2:36 am 
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Location: Bali Indonesia
And here are the rest . . .


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Susi Johnston
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 Post subject: Pasemah, n'est-ce pas?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 3:50 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jun 30, 2003 6:34 pm
Posts: 393
Location: Chiang Mai, Thailand
MAC and Susi-
It's great to see some textiles from this area come onto the forum. I credit Susi to first introducing me to these subtle, but soulful textiles and would like to see more images of these and more information included in this thread, as there is not a lot in the literature on them specifically. I confess that I don't know much about this area, but that Bengkulu is a province of Sumatra, along the south west coast and that often these textiles are referred to as being from "Pasemah". I recall reading somewhere that Bengkulu was the only British colony in Southeast Asia (for a time), and for a while under the governorship of Sir Thomas Raffles. The Pasemah Plateau is also known for some ancient Bronze Age sites. Could you shed some light on this and on the importance of textiles from this area? Terimakasih!

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 Post subject: Pasemah
PostPosted: Fri Apr 23, 2010 7:09 pm 
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Great to see some responses on this thread! Thanks Susan and thanks Susi for your posts of Bengkulu textiles with warp ikat. I have a number of pieces with weft ikat, a couple with brocade patterns and no ikat, but have never seen any with warp ikat before that I can remember. All of my pieces and most of the ones Susi posted have simple dash patterns except the one with diamond like designs. This piece reminds me a lot of Batak textiles.

I wonder if these simple dash patterns represent a very early form when the ikat dyeing technique was first used, whenever that might have been. Do you think these simple dash patterns could have become traditional from that earliest time and thus have been passed down as adat unchanged and not evolving to the present time? Do you know the names of some of the villages or towns where these textiles were produced? I have been to Sumatra several times but never to Bengkulu Prov. and as Susan says there is not a lot of info on these pieces.

I have a textile from Pasemah that is silk with diamond patterns in weft ikat. It also has weft brocade in metalic threads as well as a band of slit tapestry weave in the end fields. I have seen a piece or two just like it in books but can't remember just off hand which. If I remember, the silk didn't seem to be imported Chinese but a thicker, rougher perhaps locally produced silk. Was or is silk produced in Pasemah?

Is Pasemah in Bengkulu Prov.? Does anyone know where to get a map of this area showing the main villages of the Prov.? What do the people in Bengkulu call themselves and the language they speak? Orang Bengkulu and Bahasa Bengkulu? Can you recomend any books on this area or its people? Do we have anyone out there in Bengkulu who is on the internet? Wouldn't it be great!! Bagaimana? Best regards, MAC


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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 10:28 am 
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Dear Susi,

I was intrigued by your 2009 post of a red and white cloth from Pasemah (pasredikat1.jpg), because I have a cloth in blue warp ikat that I have never been able to identify with any degree of certainty, and that looks somewhat similar, though the pattern is somewhat more complex. I have long thought it to be one panel of a Semau cloth, because I have seen Semau three panel cloths (the middle one white) that are rather similar, but now that I have stumbled on this red one of yours I feel that perhaps my cloth could be from the same Pasemah area. Can you (or anyone else) shed any light on this?

Kind regards,
Peter


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File comment: Pasemah? Semau? Timor? Please let me know what you think we are looking at!
Image1.jpg
Image1.jpg [ 483.53 KiB | Viewed 3475 times ]

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Peter ten Hoopen
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PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES
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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 2:41 pm 
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Peter, Your textile is not from Samau or Bengkulu. I believe it is from Timor.

Although there are not a lot of textiles from Samau Island around to compare, all the ones I have seen were red. Male textiles have 2 panels of warp ikat patterns bordering a plain, white center. Female skirts have warp ikat motifs with the same pattern as male textiles.

The textiles of Samau are similar to those of Amarasi, Timor. A simple, repeating, diamond-like pattern seems to be traditional and shows little variety. If you have seen one Samau piece you have pretty much seen them all.

Samau is an extremely dry island and when I was there women were walking 6 to 10 Km. round trip twice a day to fetch water from the nearest well. Probably too dry to grow much indigo.

I don't think I have seen Bengkulu textiles where the warp threads were folded and ikated, producing mirror images with a horizontal, central divide as in your textile. This is the norm, however, in many Timorese, warp ikats. The tumpal like motifs that border the central divide and the ends, as well as the white fringes are also typical of Timor. The lattice ikat pattern enclosing a repeating motif is often found in Timor. All the Bengkulu textiles I have seen, both warp and weft ikat, have had simple dash patterns.

Your textile may have had striped side panels, often removed due to the bright chemical, commercial threads used, and would have been a male hip cloth. If it never had side panels it may have been a shawl or head cloth, however these would be somewhat narrower and shorter than the central panel for a hip cloth. Your textile looks rather long and wide so I am guessing it to be a central panel of a hip cloth. Dimensions would be helpful in judging.

On a somewhat seperate note, the textile Pasredikat1 posted by Susi in this thread, I believe could be a Batak textile and not from Bengkulu. The end borders seem to be twining rather than tapestry and the motifs and layout say Batak to me. I have never seen an ikat textile from Bengkulu with such an elaborate ikat motif, especially in warp ikat. All of the ikat textiles I have seen from Bengkulu had simple dash motifs like the other pieces in this post.

I couldn't find an image of a textile from Samau to post so I guess I need to get mine out to photograph and post when time permits. Does anyone else have textiles from the Helong people of Samau they could post? How about Bengkulu? We need more textiles to compare so please post if you have any to share.

Best regards


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PostPosted: Fri May 24, 2013 5:04 pm 
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Location: Portugal
Hallo Mac,

Thanks for your observations. I also originally assumed it was Timorese. Daeng Iskandar, who sold it to me, thought it was Soe, but could not confirm the provenance. I never saw another Soe or other Timor ikat quite like it for twenty years, so I started thinking about other possibilities. I was directed towards Semau because of the patterning of a Semau in Woven Messages, fig. 250, and by one in Yeager and Jacobson's work, Fig. 32. with similar pattern, but indeed in morinda red. I have never been to Semau, so had no idea how hard it might be there to obtain indigo. I do not see any sign that something has ever been attached to the selvages, and now that I can forget about it being a Semau panel, I think that indeed it was most likely intended as a turban. The size is 51 x 213 cm. (Similar to Insana turban shown in Woven Messages, which is 43x215). In the past I have shown the piece to Julie Emery who has been travelling to Timor for quite a few years as a trader and she thought it might have been created by master weaver Sebastian Uskuno from Unab whom she knows fairly well. She showed me some pictures of work of his that is also very long and narrow, and somewhat similar. But who knows, perhaps Daeng was right after all.

Kind regards,
Peter

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Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 1:23 am 
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Peter, Pak Daeng is a local and has seen a lot of Indonesian textiles in his several decades of selling them so I would tend to go with his opinion.

A length of over 2 meters seems a bit long for a headcloth and is about right for a man's hip or shoulder cloth. 50 to 60 cen. is about normal for weaving width on a backstrap loom. As a hip cloth, side panels would have been attached but as a shoulder cloth single panel pieces are not uncommon. Perhaps it was used as a shoulder cloth.

Are you refering to the book "Textiles of Western Timor" by Yeager and Jacobson for fig. 32? Fig. 32 on page 67 is of ikated bundles of threads and not a Semau textile. By the way, the cover photo is of a man from Ayotupas wearing an ikat patterened textile.

Could you possible copy and post fig. 250 from "Woven Messages". I don't think I have that book and would like to see the Semau textile you are referring to.

Best regards


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PostPosted: Sat May 25, 2013 11:17 am 
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Location: Portugal
Hallo Mac,

Yes Pak Daeng is very knowledgeable indeed. I have bought two dozen pieces from him over time (last time a year and a half ago, when our dealings were rudely interrupted by an earthquake), and one of the things I like about him was that he has never claimed onmiscience. When he was unsure about a piece's provenance he would admit it, as he did in this case.

Afghani turbans are as long as 4.5 meters but then they are made of sheer silk. This cotton cloth would make quite a pile on the head, so yes, use as a shoulder cloth would seem a reasonable assumption.

Attached is a scan of the Semau from Khan-Majlis's Woven Messages. Not a great result I am afraid. I would have liked to post a more hidef version, but this already is 455K, just under the limit. The caption reads: "The white center part of the wrap is framed by red brown side panels, which have horizontal stripes with decorated, light-colored diamonds. Small pompons have been attached to the plied warp fringes at the transverse ends." (Size: 99 x 172 cm.)

I was indeed referring to Textiles of Western Timor, but should have mentioned that I was referring to Fig. 32 in the colour section. My apologies.

Best wishes,
Peter


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Image5.jpg
Image5.jpg [ 454.22 KiB | Viewed 3449 times ]

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Peter ten Hoopen
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PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES
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