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Ikat from Kalimantan, Borneo, Indonesia

212 Borneo, Kalimantan

Kain kebat (skirt cloth)detail  magnifiermicroscope

Origin: Borneo, Kalimantan
Locale: Ketungau river people.
Period: Late 19th - early 20th c.
Yarn: Cotton, hand-spun, fine
Technique: Warp ikat
Panels: 1
Size: 56 x 129 cm (1' 10" x 4' 2")
Weight: 205 g (7.2 oz), 284 g/m2 (0.93 oz/ft2)
Design: Field covered in pattern largely built up of rhomboids that enclose motif very similar to the kaif motifs of Timor, which there represent links to the ancestors. Intricate borders. The combination of two or three distinct, dissimilar design elements is a characteristic feature of Ketungau kain kebat, though it is not always so clearly present. Another hallmark of Ketungau is a number of hexagons arranged in one or more rows.
Comment: Antique kain kebat from the Ketungau tribe, extraordinarily intricate, even by the generally high standards of the region. The very precise weaving of the complex patterns shows the confident hand of a master. Pieces like this are very rare. Immaculate condition - echoing Heribert Amann, speaking of Ibanic textiles that entered musem collections between 1860 and 1900: 'Some of these appear brand new, as if they had been woven just before they were acquired and never used.'
Background: Additional information in chapters on Borneo and Kalimantan.
Exhibited: Hong Kong University Museum and Art Gallery, 2017.
Compare: 220 229 230 241 242
Literature: Comparable kain kebat Ketungau in Amann, Textiles from Borneo, Plate 88.
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