on IndoArtNet

Although Batik - colouring of textiles by a wax-resist method - is an ancient tradition in Indonesia, it only started to be used as a medium for Modern Arts in the Sixties. Today, its centres are Ubud on Bali and Yogyakarta on Java, the latter with the famous arts schools of ISE and ASRI - the only places in the world where on can get a degree in Batik.

In Yogyakarta, students and teachers of Batik have teamed up with other artists to form The Batik Group, a non-profit organisation aimed at promoting Modern Batik Art. Artists regularly donate works to the cooperative, which sells them and uses the proceeds as scholarships for Batik students as well as for other activities to promote Modern Batik Arts.

The following are examples of works available through the cooperative's gallery in Yogyakarta and through Indonesian Arts Network. New items are constantly added and the ones shown here might already be sold. Please contact us for more pictures or if you have questions about the cooperative or the artists. Custom designs are also possible from many artists.

35-year-old Heru (picture above right, 24cm x 94cm, US$80) is a freelance artist and gymnastics instructor. His works show traditional, sometimes Chinese-inspired scenes in vividly couloured designs. He works on 100% high quality cotton in a variety of mostly smaller formats.

Novi is a final year student at ASRI and has already made a name for herself in several local exhibitions. She also gives Batik lessons. Her exquisite, almost monochromatic works show a mixture of modern and traditional elements. The fine details are fully manually applied with a Canting (molten wax pen). Like most Batik artists, she spends several weeks to finish a single piece. Her works are on 100% cotton in mainly smaller formats - the ones below measure 47cm x 67cm and cost US$100 each. At the left you see "Bali" from a cyclus of traditional wedding scenes from Indonesian provinces (SOLD).

Dhany is a senior student at ASRI with a unique style that reminds of European church windows. Her works in all sizes are best viewed backlit and from a distance to reveal embedded structures and scenes. The picture on the right measures 73cm x 93cm, is on 100% cotton and costs US$120. Smaller ones are available from US$50 (please enquire for pictures). Dhany also works on high quality silk, which is more difficult to handle, but gives an exquisite translucent shine.

Ciptoning's trademark is the Gecko, a small lizard often found in tropical households. Geckos feed on the ubiquitous mosquito and people are thus quite fond of them. To the left you see a fine example of Lizard Art. At 106cm x 91cm, this is one of Ciptonings smaller works on cotton. It costs US$130. He works on silk material as well.

Slamet Hortoyo found his own expressive style following his master Slamet Riyanto. He prefers small formats (the ones shown below measure 50cm x 46cm and cost US$100 each SOLD) and cotton material.

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