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Ikat from Raijua, Savu Group, Indonesia

104 Savu Group, Raijua

Ei (sarong)  magnifier

Origin: Savu Group, Raijua
Locale: Village unknown.
Period: Early 20th c.
Yarn: Cotton, hand-spun, fairly coarse
Technique: Warp ikat
Panels: 2
Size: 42 x 91 cm (1' 4" x 2' 11")
Design: Narrow horizontal bands, mostly in two shades of morinda red and white, a few in indigo. Fine stripes in white. Two wide bands with a triplet of linked lozenges with inner and outer hooks - clear variants of the Timorese kaif that stand for links with the ancestors. The pinstripes in the roa, the midfield, appear to be distinctive: they are found on Raijua, not on Savu.
Comment: Very rare type of sacred heirloom in excellent condition. Sarongs of this type were made on the occasion of the birth of a child. They were never worn, but placed in the rumah adat and kept there. A small masterpiece with clear, tight weaving.
Background: Additional information in chapters on Savu Group and Raijua.
Exhibited: Museu do Oriente, Lisbon, 2014/15. Hong Kong University Museum and Art Gallery, 2017.
Published: Peter ten Hoopen, Woven Languages, 2014
Compare: 105 106
Literature: Similar design, though executed with less clear definition, on somewhat wider sarong (53 x 88 cm) intended for funeral ceremonies, from collection Witjitra Samsuria, in Duggan, Woven Stories, p. 96.
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