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KAIN IKAT FROM SUMBA, INDONESIA

literature

  • 015 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Mangili, most likely.
  • 016 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1970. Kanatang.
  • 017 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Probably Kenatang.
  • 018 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Praliu Kambera.
  • 019 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1970s. Probably Malolo.
  • 020 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1940-1950. Kanatang (probably).
  • 021 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Praliu Kambera.
  • 022 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Praliu Kambera.
  • 023 WEST SUMBA
    Hanggi (blanket). Warp ikat. 1960. Kodi region.
  • 027 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1920-40. Probably Kambera or Rende.
  • 044 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Praliu Kambera.
  • 065 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1920-1940. Kanatang (or Mangili, Kambera, Rende).
  • 071 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960-1970. Praliu, probably.
  • 072 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1950s. Rende (or Kenatang?).
  • 073 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1930-1945. Kanatang.
  • 086 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Kapunduk (near Kenatang).
  • 088 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. Circa 1970. Rende.
  • 089 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1920-1930. Melolo, probably.
  • 096 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960-1970. Rende.
  • 151 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1970. Village unknown.
  • 152 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. Circa 1950. Probably Kanatang. .
  • 153 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1975. Village unknown.
  • 155 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Rende.
  • 156 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Village unknown.
  • 157 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1940s. Mangili, 120 km East of Waingapu.
  • 158 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1960s. Pau, near Rende.
  • 160 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1950-1960. Probably Kapunduk, may also be Rende.
  • 163 WEST SUMBA
    Hanggi (blanket). Warp ikat. Late 19th - early 20th c. Kodi region.
  • 171 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1910-1925. Praliu, but in Kanatang style, made by princess from Kanatang.
  • 172 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1925-1940
  • 187 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1930-1945. Kapunduk.
  • 188 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1930s. Kanatang, probably.
  • 193 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. Early 20th C. Kapunduk.
  • 194 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Weft ikat. Colonial period. Kalu village near Praliu in Kambera, provenance of the example shown in Adams, below, and where, according to Sumbanese source contacted by Georges Breguet, the motif originated.
  • 218 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. Early 20th c. Kambera, probably.
  • 219 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. Early 20th c. Kambera, probably.
  • 222 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1930. Kanatang.
  • 228 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. 1930-1945. Locale not identified.
  • 234 EAST SUMBA
    Hinggi (men's blanket). Warp ikat. Early 20th c. Rende.
  • 283 EAST SUMBA
    Lau (sarong). Warp ikat. Ca. 1940. Kambera region.


Sumba - two different worlds


Sumba is a medium sized island in Eastern Nusa Tenggara, twice the size of Bali, roughly marking the deepest point of the curving chain of islands which stretches from Malaysia towards Australia. The climate is similar to other parts of the region, with an extended, and often severe dry season lasting roughly from May to November, and a rainy season which lasts from December to April. The agricultural base is weak and unreliable due to the arid conditions. The inhabitants subsist on rice, maize, and some other produce grown on small plots, and engage in animal husbandry. In early colonial times the island was known as a source of sandalwood, horses, and slaves. It later became known as well for its impressive megalithic tombs, and for its ikat textiles, which already began to attract the interest of 'lay' westerners in the late 19th C.
     Ikat cloths are made both in West and in East Sumba - and only there. The rest of the island is blanketed with a strict taboo on ikat weaving. The reason, as Geirnaert-Martin explains, is that according to the ratos, an esoteric part of the traditional belief system, the island itself is seen as a body in which the life fluids, we, an esoteric equivalent of rain, must be kept in. Allowing ikat everywhere would impede the flow of we. By permitting it only on the extreme tips of the island, the we can flow freely in between, giving life to the community, while the two extremes serve as a kind of anchors which prevent the we from dissipating without fertilizing the earth. Hence ikating is seen as vital for the island's fertility and survival.
     The styles of East Sumba, by far the best known, and West Sumba, often refered to as Kodi, are so completely different that the uninitiated would not think of placing them on the same island.

More information is available in the pages on the respective sections:


 

Literature

All books covering Indonesian textiles have sections on Sumba, some more in depth than others. We particularly like Decorative Arts of Sumba, published by the Museum voor Volkenkunde in Rotterdam, later renamed Wereldmuseum. The book, edited by the museum's director has some excellent contributions on the cultural backgrounds of Sumba ikat textiles - and it shows off a few of the museum's spectacular Sumba hinggi, the oldest in the world. Highly recommend are also Gewebte Botschaften / Woven Messages, Brigitte Khan Majlis's bilingual book with a good section on Sumba.


Map (satellite image) of Sumba in Lesser Sunda Islands


Map of Lesser Sunda Islands
Based on photograph by NASA, placed in public domain.

Detailed maps of Sumba by the US Army Map service in high resolution are found at the University of Texas:



©Peter ten Hoopen, 2017. All rights reserved.


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