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Woman’s Tubular Skirt (kain sarung) with Design of Floral Bouquets, Birds, and Butterflies on a Rice-Grain (beras wutah) Background

Artist Culture
Plain-weave cotton with hand-drawn wax-resist decoration (batik tulis) with synthetic dyes
Made in
Pekalongan, Central Java province, Indonesia, Asia
Costume & clothing, textiles
Current Location
Not on view
41 5/16 × 37 in. (105 × 94 cm)
Credit Line
William K. Bixby Trust for Asian Art, by exchange
Contact Us
Object Number
This woman’s tubular skirt, known as kain sarung, has various shades of blue on white cotton with hand-drawn wax-resist patterns. Diagonal bands of flowers enliven the central kepala (head) section; the darker blue bands are densely worked in the galaran pattern. Four floral bouquets with birds and butterflies are set against a remarkably fine rice-grain filler pattern on the background of the badan (body) section. Such garments with diagonal bands in the kepala and floral bouquets in the badan were produced by artists of Peranakan (mixed Javanese and Chinese) descent in Pekalongan. This major center of batik production is located on the north coast of central Java. Peranakan residents of this region, called the Pesisir, wore blue-and-white cloths of this design during times of mourning.
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