Readers in London may be interested in this talk at SOAS on 29 January 2020.
Tracing Patterns of Textiles in Ancient Java (8th-15th century)
Dr Sandra Sardjono (Tracing Patterns Foundation)
Date: 29 January 2020Time: 5:15 PM
Finishes: 29 January 2020Time: 7:00 PM
Venue: Russell Square: College Buildings Room: 4426
Type of Event: Seminar
The lecture provides an overview of the repertoire of textile-related patterns found on Ancient Javanese art and architecture, dated from 8th-15th century. The patterns, impressed upon stone and metal surfaces, enrich temple walls and the attire of Hindu-Buddhist deities and royalty. The lack of surviving textile material from this early period makes these patterns useful for tracing different types of textiles that may have existed in Ancient Java. Upon close scrutiny, however, the pattern’s veracity as a literal representation of an actual fabric can be called into question. Rather, the textile designs can be seen as a sculptor’s response to international styles. One example is a particular pattern found on a group of panels on the exterior walls of Candi Sewu, an eighth-century Buddhist temple in Central Java, which will be examined in detail.
The lecture will underscore the global connection between Java and the outside world, particularly China and India, where prototypes and correlates of the textile images and sculptural vocabularies can be found. The talk will show how Javanese artists displayed a sophisticated understanding of international styles of both sculpture and textiles, and were adept at translating, decontextualizing, and re-contextualizing—as a whole or in part—into a unique local aesthetic.