Friday, May 25, 2012

On Batik Indonesia

The motifs and the story.

I have been using lots of Indonesian Batik on my label GULA ( means Sugar in English). Thought i would love to share something about Batik. 
Even thought i have a wikipedia link about what is Batik all about, but this is would be something to read when you ended up visiting my blog. 

Batik is Indonesian traditional cloth. Well known as the treasure of Indonesian cultures, being recorded by UNESCO as a masterpiece of the cultures, i think it is something that i would be proud of. Therefore, using it in design and some of my projects are the best privilege for me to introduce it more to the world, where am i coming from.

The process of batik originally made by hand, hand-drawn, hand-painted by soak it into the colored water, hand-waxed , and air-dried. Back then, the colors process used the natural colorist, such as plants or fruits. Now, the process become modern, you can find a batik stamp for mass productions of Batik or printed ones. And the original ones which made by hand available in high price at the market.

Batik motifs are variable, but, some motifs called as forbidden motifs, thats mean, only the high status such as king or the royal family. But now, it becomes the famous motifs that could be worn by anybody.The infamous batik motif is Parang rusak , known as Broken swords, damaged reefs or damaged machete.

the sample of "parang rusak"

Parang Rusak motif

Inspiration actually come from the phenomenon of large waves that break up rock and ruin. In the Java language, the term with a machete near the reef. Parang broken means broken or damaged reefs.
Anyway, in Javanese language up to today, it just know parang means big traditional knife that illustrate courage. But, the truth about it actually is not about the swords or machetes or knife itself, There are hidden meaning behind the motifs. It actually took the meaning from the reef nearby the sea and the wave philosophy, never broken relationship between the king or royal family, the unbroken royalty lines that given from the king to his family. Also, the diagonal line represents the respect, honors, the truth and the loyalty.
This motif back then was often use as a presents for the king and the family as the 'good news' from the soldiers who came back from the war and won the battle.
There are couples of Parang rusak motifs out there, each with their own meanings and philosophy. 
There are also other motifs that inspired batik, such as flowers, animals or even the wayang or Indonesian traditional puppets.

For my project, i am using lots of modern parang rusak motifs. 
you can see on one of my necklace piece below that using parang rusak motifs

The eight

Images and courtesy are belong to


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