Batik Textiles of Java | ITSLIQUID

Batik Textiles of Java

Art | March 28, 2017 |

Batik Textiles of Java_001Image courtesy of Art Institute of Chicago

Batik Textiles of Java
ART INSTITUTE OF CHICAGO
April 21, 2017–September 21, 2017

 

The Indonesian island of Java is the principal source of the brilliant textiles known as batiks. The terms batik derives from the Malay word meaning to draw with a broken dot or line and refers to the wax-resist process by which patterns are imposed on fabric. Many countries, especially in Asia, produce wax-resist textiles, but the Javanese have developed the most sophisticated method for executing the process. A liquefied wax compound is literally drawn on the surface of the cloth in order to keep either the pattern itself or the background areas from taking the dye. Each color thus requires separate application, leading to a multi-step production.

 Batik Textiles of Java_002Image courtesy of Art Institute of Chicago

Although there are hints of earlier processes and textile types that perhaps led to batik, there is no evidence that the batik methods we know today are older than the early 19th century. The technique flourished in Java as a result of the introduction of fine imported cotton and the invention of the canting, an implement with a narrow tube fed from an attached reservoir for precise drawing with melted wax. Later in the 19th century, a further boost was given to production, though not to quality, with the development of the cap, a stamp for applying the wax resist much more expeditiously than drawing by hand. Some batik textiles combine both resist processes.

 

Batik Textiles of Java_003Image courtesy of Art Institute of Chicago

Traditionally, women have been the primary producers of batik. Dyeing, on the other hand, is a craft done by both men and women, though indigo-dyeing falls solely to men. The range of patterns, some identified by name, numbers well over a thousand. Javanese batik makers have always been open to a broad range of sources for their patterns and motifs: from local Javanese and Hindu works to Chinese, Arabic, and Western inspirations, including stories such as Cinderella and cartoons like Flash Gordon. Batik fabrics are mostly made into traditional garments such as sarongs (tubular skirts), skirt cloths, head scarves, shoulder cloths, and breast cloths. This display features a diverse selection of pattern and functional types, all from the museum’s rich collection, along with materials that further explain the batik process.

 

more. artinstitutechicago.edu

Are you an artist, architect, designer? Would you like to be featured on ITSLIQUID platform? Send an e-mail to info@itsliquid.com or fill the form below

RELATED POSTS


Norton Museum of Art by…

Architecture | July 26, 2021

The Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach was built in 1941 to house the art collection of the industrialist Ralph Hubbard Norton and his wife, Elizabeth. The museum was laid out by the architect Marion Sims Wyeth as an elegant series of Art Deco inspired single storey pavilions around a central courtyard. Read more


ART BARN OF THOMAS RANDALL-PAGE

Design | June 22, 2021

Thomas Randall-Page slides open a muted agricultural building to reveal an elegant new art space for his father, the sculptor Peter Randall-Page RA. Read more


Interview: Nataliya Elmer

Interviews | June 21, 2021

Born 1977 in Luhansk (Ukraine) Nataliya Elmer started painting pictures since she was a child. After moving to Tyrol (Austria) in 2003, she started painting with acrylic and oil colours, inspired by the nature of this region and her my fantastic dreams. She wants to pass on the viewers all of her experiences, emotions and feelings. Read more


Interview: Inbal Kristin

Interviews | June 20, 2021

Inbal Kirstin is an artist born in Israel in 1980. After having obtained a diploma in Media design and a Bachelor’s degree in Social Sciences and Humanities, she participated in several photography courses. She have always had a passion for art. Since she remembers, art was a vocation for her, a way to express herself and to evoke the viewer’s emotion. Read more


Sign up for our Newsletter.

Enter your email to receive our latest updates!