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PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2016 3:26 pm 
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Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 3:47 pm
Posts: 5
Hello
I was wondering if anyone has seen a similartextile to this silk selendang from Java/Sumatra. I think the batik was done in Java, maybe also the plangi/tritik part, and the metal lace etc. were added in Sumatra.

I would also be grateful for any reserach tips on this topic!

Thanks
Elisabeth


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 28, 2016 7:20 pm 
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Hi Elizabeth

Very many thanks for posting such an interesting and fine textile. Since seeing your post I have been doing a little consulting behind the scenes. As luck would have it I have recently written a review for the latest (Autumn #189) edition of Hali magazine of the book "Batik, traditional textiles of Indonesia: from the Rudolf Smend & Donald Harper collections" by Rudolf Smend and Donald Harper published by Tuttle Publishing ISBN 978-0-8048-4643-1. There are contributions in the book from various batik enthusiasts and experts including informative captions to the textiles provided by anthropologist Maria WroĊ„ska-Friend. In the book (pages 126-128) are illustrated 6 Kemben (breast cloths of long, narrow cloth wound tightly around a woman's chest) all from Central Java which are batik with applied cloth which in several cases is silk. However, not the very decorative silk as in your example nor with added braid.

I was intrigued by your piece and the similarity yet differences with those shown in the book and decided to be cheeky enough to consult Rudolf Smend who thought you were on the right track with your assessment but referred me to his friend, Donald Harper, as he had frequently visited Sumatra. I am very pleased to say that Donald came back to me today with some helpful comments and was happy that I should share them with the forum.

Quote:
"Regarding the batik in question: Over the years, I have collected several pieces similar to this one and the style is among my favorites. What I particularly like is the combination of batik, tritik and tie dye. Three techniques in one textile. These very long silk slendangs were made in the East Java areas of Pati and Rembang. They made various styles and qualities and were quite popular. They were not only used in Java but exported to Bali and Sumatra. Sometimes the batik is "tjap" and sometimes "tulis". In the example we are talking about, the batik is tjap whereas the tie dye and tritik is of course hand-done. The silk is heavy shantung from China that is of such good quality that if you vigorously crush a section in your hand, when you release your grip it does not wrinkle at all. Indeed, it does seem that this is a Sumatra export piece because of the addition metallic yarn fringes were favored in Sumatra. I think the slendang dates to the late 19th C and of course made with natural dyes.

I don't know if I have shed any more light on the piece that you already didn't know but I hope this is helpful nevertheless."

Donald Harper is the driving force behind the on-line East Indies Museum website http://www.eastindiesmuseum.com One of the Central Javanese examples from the book I refer to above is shown in the batik gallery http://www.eastindiesmuseum.com/textile ... 86-38.html but not one with applied tritik/tie dye although there are examples of this technique in another gallery.

I hope that this gives you some confidence in your assessment of the textile. Thanks for prompting me to find out some more about Kemben and my thanks to Rudolf and Donald for sharing their expertise.

_________________
Pamela

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


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2016 10:55 am 
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Joined: Mon Oct 26, 2015 3:47 pm
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Dear Pamela

Thank you very much for your informative reply and the comment by Donald Harper! This is great as it confirmed what I had suspected. I am happy to hear it is a relatively unusual object as I myself hadn't found a similar piece so far in the literature I consulted.

Thank you again!

Elisabeth


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