tribaltextiles.info

It is currently Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:35 am

All times are UTC




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Fri Sep 09, 2016 8:20 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Dear all,

Just welcomed into the fold an old ulos ragi hotang. Ex collection August Flick. The seller, a well established dealer with decades of experience, is convinced that it is 19th C., and from the feel of the cloth and the general appearance, I believe I can credit this. The cloth is very large, especially long: 85 x 230 cm. The supplementary weft, which I know little about, to me looks both complex and well executed. The two sections with supplementary weft are different from on another, one male, one female, which I believe make this a an ulos ragi hotang pinunsaan. Is this term correct?

Most importantly, I would like to know which of the the end sections is the male, which the female. I would be grateful to anyone who can elucidate this point.

Best wishes,
Peter

PS: The cloth was examined under a microscope. The yarn is very fine hand spun.

Attachment:
File comment: Batak ulos ragi hotang
tmp.jpg
tmp.jpg [ 394.01 KiB | Viewed 2990 times ]


Attachment:
File comment: Microscopic image of ragi hotang (800x)
ikat_257_micro_01.jpg
ikat_257_micro_01.jpg [ 146.14 KiB | Viewed 2990 times ]

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Last edited by Peter ten Hoopen on Sat Sep 10, 2016 9:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 7:23 am 
Offline

Joined: Sun Oct 18, 2015 12:32 pm
Posts: 9
Location: France
Dear Peter,

Do you read the first Sandra Niessen's book ? (Motifs of life in Toba Batak texts and textiles, 1985, Offsetdrukkerij Kanters B.V. Alblasserdam) I think you could find the answer in it. From my memory (I read it, but I have not her book here), the pinunsaan name is rather devoted to ulos ragidup, with effectively one ulu male and the other female.

Best regards.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 9:52 am 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2003 1:42 pm
Posts: 1989
Location: Canterbury, UK
Peter, please post a photo of each of the ends of your textile as they are not at all clear in the image you have posted.

Yes, Remy, Sandra's 'Motifs of life in Toba Batak texts and textiles' is indeed the best place I know to find a discussion of the motifs thought to be male or female - pages 182-195 as I refreshed my memory last night from my copy.

Peter, your textile is not a pinusaan although the photo makes it difficult to determine. I would expect a pinunsaan to comprise 5 pieces of separately woven textiles sewn together with the two ends sewn onto the middle centre being white warps and supplementary wefts for pattern. A ragidup would be fairly similar (and similar usage) but the centre end panels of natural warp yarns would have been added not by sewing on panels but by extending the warp. There is at least one detailed thread on this on the forum. See some links I list below which I found via the search facility on this forum.

You mention 'supplementary warp' patterning at the ends of your textile. I think you mean supplementary weft patterning and then, right at the end, twining. There are two narrow vertical bands of supplementary warp patterning either side of the central section (which includes the ikat) of your textile.

Several, mainly older, Batak textiles show different weft patterning (male/female) at each end, not just the pinunsaan and ragidup. The older textiles also show more style variation. Another feature of the greater width of older ragi hotang textils that Sandra Niessen mentions in 'Legacy in cloth: Batak textiles of Indonesia' is that this suggests that historically they may have been worn as hip cloths. More recently they are pretty much used as shoulder cloths. Additionally, Sandra has mentioned to me that more detailed and ornate end patterning was often added to increase the value (I think not just in a purely monetary sense but to give more value to it in a ritual or gift giving sense).

You might be interested to look at a 1985 pinunsaan which I have on my main website where I show the different patterning on the male and female ends. Go to the bottom of the web page of the overall photo of the cloth and click on the end detail images for greater closeup. From this you may be able to determine (guess :)) which are the male and female ends on your textile. http://www.tribaltextiles.info/articles ... l/VT07.htm

I suggest that you also look at the forum thread viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1692&hilit=pinunsaan where Udo Gangl posted a quite similar textile to yours. I also, with Sandra Niessen's permission posted an image from her collection:'From page 268 of 'Legacy in cloth', Catalogue 4.2a a ragi huting Whole cloth 196x67 + fringe 44 cm which is in Sandra Niessen's collection and was collected in 1984 by G.Wolff. Note Sandra refers to the cloth as a ragi huting.

See also viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1296&hilit=pinunsaan and viewtopic.php?f=1&t=1681&hilit=pinunsaan&start=15 This page 2 of the thread also shows male and female ends on a Simalungun bulang head cloth as well as the Toba Batak pinunsaan and ragidup.

You have added a very nice textile to your collection. Congratulations!

_________________
Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
on-line tribal textiles resource


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 5:52 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Dear Rémy,

Yes I have the Niessen thesis you refer to, but unfortunately the book provides little clarity on the distinction between male and female ulu. She mentions that: "Bataks identify the ulu as male and female on the basis of the relative lengths and component motifs." That is it, as far as I have been able to discover. She also shows two sets of examples, but neither of these are close enough to the ulu on my cloth to be of any help. Thank you for your reply though - it could have been a hit!

Kind regards,
Peter

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 6:18 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Dear Pamela,

Thank your for replying in your usual in-depth manner.

Yes of course supplementary warp was a stupid error. I shall try to go back and edit the original posting. Your observation about the supplementary warp in the narrow strip at the edges of the central field is correct: yes there is supplementary warp there.

It certainly makes sense to see more elaborate ulu in supplementary weft as a way to increase the value of the cloth. In most societies such investments in time and creativity are rewarded both with prestige and monetary value.

Udo_gangl's cloth in the post you refered to is indeed very similar to mine. Fine piece!

I did notice that Sandra Niessen refered to a similar cloth, Cat. 4.2a as ragi huting, but frankly even after studying the section of the book carefully for the life of me I cannot work out what the difference is between ragi hotang and ragi huting, other than a difference of place of origin. On page 267 she mentions Toba, Silindung, Holbung, Samosir, but I cannot work out which name belongs to which place. My cloth does look very similar to the ragi huting, but it has the ikated selvedge strip, which I do not notice on the ragi huting. The close-up of a ragi hotang that she shows as Cat. 4.2f is very similar to my cloth up close. Again on p. 267 Sandra writes that "Stripes embellished with warp floats mark the boundaries between the sides and centre of the cloth." As indeed is the case on mine, but I cannot from the text distill if this applies to ragi hotang or ragi huting. Maybe I am just too dense, a possibility that others in my immediate vicinity have at various moments in my life suggested as not unlikely.

An interesting feature of my cloth is its rather extreme length. In her doctoral thesis Sandra mentions 230 cm as the top end of the length scale, but mine is 240 cm. Not sure if it means anything, but it sure makes it look impressive.

Thank you for your congratulations,
Peter

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 6:29 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Dear Pamela and other interested parties,

I forgot to address the issue of the pinunsaan nomenclature. On p. 267 of Legacy in Cloth Niessen write re pinunsaan: "The patterning in the two fringe ends of the cloth differs." This is the case in my cloths as well, hence my assumption that the term applies.

In a few days I hope to make close-ups of the two endings and post them, so that you get a better look.

Best wishes,
Peter

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 8:34 pm 
Offline
Site Admin

Joined: Sun Jun 29, 2003 1:42 pm
Posts: 1989
Location: Canterbury, UK
Peter

I thought you might be interested to see a ragi harangan which I have in my collection. It has similar ikat at the side edges to yours and also it has male and female ends although not nearly as complicated as yours. It is 182 x 127 cm + fringe 5cm and I pretty sure that it is hand spun. My photos only show it folded as a 1/4 cloth so that I could cope with the photography. As I mentioned in my earlier post, I have very much come to realise that older cloths have more flexibility and do not fit into any convenient straight jacket!

If you are unable to edit your post re warp/weft I can do so for you (and edit out my comment about it being weft patterning not warp).


Attachments:
File comment: ragi harangan - 1/4 size
IMGP0193w.jpg
IMGP0193w.jpg [ 89.72 KiB | Viewed 2973 times ]
File comment: showing the ikat edge
IMGP0205w.jpg
IMGP0205w.jpg [ 81.74 KiB | Viewed 2973 times ]
File comment: showing the different patterning at each end
IMGP0202w.jpg
IMGP0202w.jpg [ 102.96 KiB | Viewed 2973 times ]

_________________
Pamela

http://www.tribaltextiles.info
on-line tribal textiles resource
Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sat Sep 10, 2016 9:52 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Hi Pamela,

Yes is the same kind of edge indeed. And I agree that there appears to be a huge number of ulos varieties.

Best wishes
Peter

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:19 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2006 7:18 am
Posts: 93
Dear All,

Peter ten Hoopen has a very nice textile. Indeed the great age is suggested by its unusual size. The textiles of the past tended to be larger -- to much larger -- than the modern ones. I think it is a shouldercloth, however, and the larger size did not make it a hipcloth.

Peter quotes me as follows: Yes I have the Niessen thesis you refer to, but unfortunately the book provides little clarity on the distinction between male and female ulu. She mentions that: "Bataks identify the ulu as male and female on the basis of the relative lengths and component motifs."

Alas, my work was seen as providing little clarity. I, on the other hand, wanted to be careful and fair. Westerners often look for a one-to-one mapping in design as in: this means this and that means that. Symbolism, luckily, does not always work the way the Westerner desires and that is why we have to study more than iconography but look at the thought world behind design.

I did not find throughout the Batak area that every woman agreed on which end was female and which was male. What would have been appropriate for me as an anthropologist? To assign a definite this means male and that means female so that my Western readers would feel satisfied? I noted that it seemed to me that it was about the opposition more than "what motif means what". It was about the presence of the opposition between male and female and the joining of male and female in a cloth. That seemed to me to be the important thing, more important than consistency in "this motif is the female" and "that motif is the male".

I agree with Pamela that it is very difficult to see the cloth that is offered for comment because the resolution is too small.

From what I can see, the top end seems to have the motifs most often deemed "female" in my experience (should I generalize from my experience?) but I couldn't see the lower end.

There many variations in the cloths -- the older they are, the more varied they are because regions were less connected and local traditions were more distinctive. I didn't have an opportunity to travel back in time and document every variation that was extant. I started my study in 1979. I worked sometimes with extrapolations and generalizations. I tried to understand the importance of the naming of the patterns. I didn't stop with: this means this and that means that. I stick by my carefully worded, "Bataks identify the ulu as male and female on the basis of the relative lengths and component motifs" because, in my experience, that is what they did.

_________________
Sandra Niessen

www.bataktextiles.com
http://bataktextiles.blogspot.com/


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:31 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Dear Sandra,

Thank you for your appreciative words about the cloth, and your considered reply. Yes I do agree that in general we in our western culture love to pin things down to distinct relationships between motifs and their meaning - vide for instance the iconography of Golden Age and earlier Dutch and Flemish paintings which was a precise system of motifs with fixed, and widely known, symbolic meaning. So for me, as someone who grew up in this culture, the lack of clear distinctions was unfortunate. It is fortunate on the other hand that, as far as I know, there is no open war about the meaning of Batak motifs such as there is about those from Sarawak and Kalimantan. Perhaps I, and many others, need to accept that there are many things we shall never know about the cloths that have come to us (in this case wholly by lucky accident). On the other hand, if we begin writing about them and do not provide clarity about symbolic charges of certain design elements we are prone to be chastised for not providing clarity. On a personal level, there is a deep need in me to learn what I can about the cloths in my collection, to preserve and share that information. So I shall certainly keep trying to find concrete answers, while learning to accept that in some cases I have to be satisfied, and ask my readers to be satisfied, with the information that certain distinctions - such as between male and female endings - are made. Information that in itself already imparts something important about the culture. Thank you for helping me with this learning process.

One concrete question remains for me, and I hope you can answer it: should I call this cloth a ragi hotang, or ragi huting? And linked to that, I hope it is answerable: in which subregion do you think it was made?

Kind regards,
Peter

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 7:57 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
PS: I aim to photograph the two endings of the ulos under discussion in the coming days and post them on this forum.

P.

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2006 7:18 am
Posts: 93
As far as I can tell it is a Ragi Hotang from South of Lake Toba.

_________________
Sandra Niessen

www.bataktextiles.com
http://bataktextiles.blogspot.com/


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 8:15 pm 
Offline

Joined: Fri Apr 14, 2006 7:18 am
Posts: 93
As far as I can tell it is a Ragi Hotang from South of Lake Toba.

_________________
Sandra Niessen

www.bataktextiles.com
http://bataktextiles.blogspot.com/


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: Ragi Hotang
PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 9:50 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Thanks Sandra. Will update my record.

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Fri Sep 16, 2016 4:38 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Jun 26, 2012 11:18 pm
Posts: 110
Location: Portugal
Dear all,

Shown below are the two end sections of the ulos ragi hotang. I hope that these images are clear enough to identify which end is mostly likely the male, which most likely the female.

Kind regards,
Peter

Attachment:
tmp1.jpg
tmp1.jpg [ 437.61 KiB | Viewed 2932 times ]


Attachment:
tmp2.jpg
tmp2.jpg [ 455.21 KiB | Viewed 2932 times ]

_________________
Peter ten Hoopen
www.ikat.us

PUSAKA COLLECTION: ONLINE MUSEUM OF TRADITIONAL INDONESIAN IKAT TEXTILES


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 17 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group