Man's Sarong

DATE:
1930
MATERIAL AND TECHNIQUE:
Batik on commercial cotton
CLASSIFICATION:
Textiles
DIMENSIONS:
73 1/2 × 40 3/4 in. (1 m 86.69 cm × 103.51 cm)
DEPARTMENT:
Arts of the Pacific Islands
LOCATION:
Not On View
CREDIT LINE:
Dallas Museum of Art, gift of Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Bywaters in memory of Paul and Viola van Katwijk
OBJECT NUMBER:
1982.285

General Description

On the body (badan), diagonal rows of two different sword (parang) designs alternate with bands of squares containing abstract floral images. The sword motif is associated with kris, a men's ritual knife, believed to have magical powers. Once reserved for royalty in Central Java, this design was later worn by non-royalty and then adopted for north coast batik and worn by both men and women.

The head (kepala) has rows of short and long triangles (tumpal) on either side of a central vertical line of diamonds. Broad strips filled with stylized Garuda bird motifs (referencing the Hindu god Vishnu's mount) and beige flowers on an indigo background frame the head. The gandawari (sweetly wafting smell) border, above and below the head, is traditionally a symbol of marriage.

The rigidity of the images suggests that the batik was created with a stamp. The blackish areas result from overlapping soga brown and indigo dyes.

Excerpt from

  • Label text, Waxed: Batik from Java, 2016.

Web Resources