Notes on Antique Textiles, Folk Art & Timeless Traditions – Jaina Mishra
I have often picked up pieces on my travels that I have not fallen in love with.
The reasoning is that I know that there will not be another opportunity to select from such a large variety of quality pieces as this art is a specialty of that location.
And so as a result of such a ‘now or never’ moment, I came to acquire a few Batik pieces in Borobudur, Java Indonesia in 2008.
As expected, without the hook of intense attraction, these pieces were soon forgotten and went into hibernation in my shelves. And came to life again only last month when some decor experts discussed this textile art.
A few pictures of some pieces that I now understand better.
Some are finely hand painted Batik (couldn’t afford the superfine!), some are hybrids between handpainted and block printed and some are hand painted figurative.
a. Completely Hand Painted – Batik Tulis
b. Hybrid of hand painted & block
c. Figurative free hand painted.
The drawing is naive and the features of the characters is very typical and seen in all art forms in this region including puppets.
c1: Village Scenes
c2. War / Conquest Procession Scene
c3. Sea Wars?
It was interesting to learn that wood can be painted using the Batik texhnique.
A few examples:
In Borobudur I had my very first exposure to Javanese Batik art. And as it is in every ‘first exposure’ my mind was so naive that questions did not even arise. I merely absorbed everything and went where my eyes and the saleswoman took me. With more time to dwell on their remarkable features and the differences between pieces, a curiosity arises … what were those scenes depicting… how do they work on wood ….would a print emulating batik look different… and many more!
Maybe there will be time someday to learn more!