Batik. Traces through time. Batik Collections in the National Museum – Náprstek Museum
Author(s): Fiona Kerlogue
Publisher: National Museum
Place of publication: Prague
Number of pages: 160
Citation: KERLOGUE, Fiona. Batik. Traces through time. Batik Collections in the National Museum – Náprstek Museum . Vydání první. Prague: National Museum, 2021. 160 stran. ISBN 978-80-7036-673-8 .
The batik of Java has a special place in museum textile collections and aspects of the art of batik have been discussed at length in countless publications. This study, based on the batik collections of the Náprstek Museum, raises a number of questions which have been so far underexplored. How strong is the evidence for the early manufacture of batik in Java? How and when did batik-making become widely practised there? Was it made by village women for their own use? How and why did batik develop into an industry employing thousands of people, filling warehouses with stock to be distributed throughout the Indonesian archipelago? What was the effect of the introduction of wax printing and of aniline dyes? It is often asserted that batik carries deep meaning. To what extent is this really the case? When did batik depicting wayang or shadow puppet figures start to be made, and who for? What was the role of calligraphy batiks? And what was it that drew European collectors to batik in the early 20th century? What local circumstances governed their choices? In a series of essays, this volume explores these questions, drawing on contemporary sources and providing a wealth of new insights.