Batik of Java: Poetics and Politics now showing
  • Thursday 30 June 2011

Exhibition:   Batik of Java: Poetics and Politics

Gallery:       Noosa Regional Gallery

Date:           8 June – 24 July 2011

Public Program includes:

  • Extensive Schools Program (see attached)
  • 11am – 2pm 10 July, Family Day with a range of FREE children’s activities
  • 10.30am 19 July Fundraiser Fashion Parade

After a successful showing at the Caloundra Regional Gallery last year, Batik of Java: Poetics and Politics is now showing at the Noosa Regional Gallery.

In 2009, UNESCO recognised Javanese batik as an item of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity which provided the stimulus for this exhibition.

The exhibition not only showcases 23 outstanding batiks from the North Coast of Java area known as Pasisir, but also a series of recent paintings by contemporary Indonesian artist Dadang Christanto entitled Batik Has Been Burnt.

"The exhibition aims to establish a dialogue between the textiles and the paintings, as well as the present and memory, achievement and loss. While the collection of fabrics provides an insight into one of the greatest textile traditions of the world, the series of Dadang Christanto’s paintings refers to his personal encounter with this group of textiles," said Dr Maria Wronksa-Friend, Lead Curator and internationally respected specialist on Indonesian textiles.

The selection of batiks is from Sunshine Coast art collectors – Greg Roberts and Ian Reed and illustrates the diversity of the cultural and artistic traditions of Pasisir.

"Our appreciation of the rich cultural traditions of Indonesia and its peoples developed after a number of trips to Bali and in particular after two trips to Jogyakarta, Java in 2006," says Ian Reed.

"We spent considerable time in batik workshops, observing in awe the canting skills of the women batikkers. With agile hands, a highly developed eye, breathing control and immense patience, the women produced fine lines and myriad dots and shapes, by the application of flowing hot wax onto cloth."

The accompanying Dadang Christanto paintings, Batik Has Been Burnt, express controversial and politically critical subject matter through moving yet elegant images that are extremely seductive. Christanto is one of the most recognised Indonesian artists of today. His images reflect the memories of his mother’s collection of batiks which were lost in tragic circumstances.

The exhibition encourages you to explore the realms of emotion and experience generated by these two groups of artworks, each with their own symbolic and social meanings. "While the collection of fabrics provides an insight into one of the greatest textile traditions of the world, the series of Dadang Christanto’s paintings refers to his personal encounter with this group of textiles," said Friend.