April 19, 2019

Busy with Batik

Entrance of the exhibition 'The journey to Batik - Day and Night' 
with first my painted 'Pagi-Sore' design from 2010
At Nieuwe Veste in Breda (NL)

Next to my design, the actual Batik, made by KUB Srikandi in 2012

Four new Pagi-Sore Batiks by Kub Srikandi, 2016 - 2018

This Sunday my blog is 10 years old! What a journey it has been, both for me and for Batik.
At first when I started my blog, it was my main way of sharing Batik; the stories, my discoveries, finds and maybe most of all my enthusiasm. The more I learned the more I wanted to know. I never thought that 10 years later I would still be busy with Batik.
And now, not just on my blog, or lately not at all on my blog at all, sorry for that, but in the real world I can share Batik. Last year and this year has been full with wonderful activities in which I could share my love for Batik in so many ways.
Last year, after a long struggle with my health {nothing new there} and reaching maybe the lowest point in my career confidence wise, a shift happend and great things came on my path. Still not all without cloudy days (mostly with clouds made out of greed & disrespect), but with very nice moments and all about Batik! The journey will not be all smooth sailing from here, but I am so happy that after almost 10 years, I finally can share my journey with so many on such different stages.

In October 2018 Cécile Verwaaijen reached out to me if I wanted to join an exhibition at De Nieuwe Veste about Batik. Different activities were being organised in Breda under the name 'Indische winter' {Indo-European Winter}. At the Stedelijk an exhibition was shown about the Indo-European influence on the Dutch popmusic.
During our first meeting I realised it was going to be a solo exhibition and that I was entirely free to fill it in however I wanted to.  I focussed in this exhibition on the phenomenon of 'Pagi-Sore Batiks'. These 'Day and Night Batiks' have a fascinating and tough history. It inspired me to make my own Batik-design in 2010 and I was a great opportunity to finally display the original painting with the Batiks made in 2012 by KUB Srikandi in Jeruk.
Next to my own design, I shared newer 'Pagi-Sore Batiks' also made by KUB Srikandi. Cécile had the great idea of hanging them in the space, so this colourful installation formed the heart of the exhibition.

Exhibition Text in Dutch written & designed by me

Batiks by Batikworkshop Gading Kencana 
and photo of Dwi Anggraeni during the 'Tari Batik' at that Batikworkshop in 2016

Batik & photos of batikmaker Nurul Maslahah made/ from 2016

Batik & photos of batikmaker Ibu Rasminah made/from 2016

Next to the Batiks, I shared the story of 'Pagi-Sore Batiks' in a hand-out, exhibition-text and a folder filled with prints from books about these cloths and the making-of my own 'Day and Night Batiks'.
My film 'The journey to Batik - Tari Batik' was shown on a screen and I featured all individual makers with photos and their own Batik.
The exhibition 'The journey to Batik - Day and Night' was opened on 16 December 2018. During the opening my film was projected in the 'Grote zaal'. I teamed up with Shuen-Li Spirit to give two Batikworkshops and I made a slide-show for the piano piece by Leopold Godowsky called the ‘Java Suite’ performed by Poitr van de Werff, teacher at Nieuwe Veste, during their New Year Concert.

The exhibition, and the collaboration with Cécile on making it, truly was a dream come true. It was so great to get this opportunity in my old hometown and it was so great how many people came. It was just amazing and the great Batik-flow started there hasn't yet slowed down.
It has been a bit quiet on my blog, for those who get my newsletter or follow my website, Instagram or Facebook have been kept better up to date on my activities. I will get it updated here, I promise, so much to share! Unfortunately I can't share everything yet. So what I am doing in all those archives has to be a secret still...
New news I can share however isssss that I am going to be part of this years Tong Tong Fair!!!
I am so exited to tell you that together with the lovely Guave ladies, Romée & Myrthe, we will be hosting 'The Batik Stand, A Stand For Batik'.
From 23 May till 2 June you can find us on the Grand Pasar for everything about, on and with Batik. More info soon on my website, but wanted to share it here first!
Last year, when I visited the Tong Tong Fair I was so sad not finding any Batik Tulis or Cap. And I was so disappointed that some stalls even sold 'Batik Print' as "Authentic", "Indonesian Textile"or "Traditional Batik". I posted about it on Facebook and an interesting & heated discussion started {You can read/see it in my Instagram highlighted stories 'Fake Batik''}. Some didn't get the problem or saw no harm in it, but for most the issue was real. Even Batikmakers from Java joined in! During the discussion the idea was introduced, by Jennifer of TheAiria Batik & Myrthe of Guave, to actually rent a stall & share real Batik within the Tong Tong Fair. Not against, but with the sharing, so we could share what real Batik is & why it is important to promote, support & buy it. Now one year later, we are actually doing it! Sooo great! So hope to see you there!

Thanks for visiting my exhibition  'The journey to Batik - Day and Night'

For more about the exhibition 'The journey to Batik - Day and Night':

- See 'News' on my website

- Watch the interview with Kees van Meel for his ‘Kijk in Kunst’ program for BredaNu {in Dutch}