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Bantul's rustic pottery in demand in Europe

Stefanus Ajie

The Jakarta Post

Yogyakarta  /  Fri, June 30, 2017  /  06:06 pm
  • Agus Imron's rustic-style pottery is especially popular among European customers.

    Agus Imron's rustic-style pottery is especially popular among European customers. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    Agus Imron's rustic-style pottery is especially popular among European customers.

  • A worker adds color to rustic-style pottery.

    A worker adds color to rustic-style pottery. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A worker adds color to rustic-style pottery.

  • A pot is given additional treatment to create a rugged appearance.

    A pot is given additional treatment to create a rugged appearance. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A pot is given additional treatment to create a rugged appearance.

  • A customer examines pottery prior to purchasing it at Agus Imron's gallery in Bantul, Yogyakarta.

    A customer examines pottery prior to purchasing it at Agus Imron's gallery in Bantul, Yogyakarta. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    A customer examines pottery prior to purchasing it at Agus Imron's gallery in Bantul, Yogyakarta.

  • Agus Imron in his gallery in Semail village, Bantul, Yogyakarta.

    Agus Imron in his gallery in Semail village, Bantul, Yogyakarta. OF JP/Stefanus Ajie

    Agus Imron in his gallery in Semail village, Bantul, Yogyakarta.

OF

In a humble workshop located in Semail village in Bantul, Yogyakarta, Agus Imron is working on a creation of clay, turning the material into a work of art that will attract customers from across Europe.

Bantul has long been the center of handicrafts, especially pottery. Pottery from the region usually has an ethnic style, adorned with natural colors like black and brown. But Agus, a graduate of the Indonesian Art Institute (ISI) Yogyakarta, has his own idea of pottery art; he prefers to make rustic patterns, resulting in ancient-looking products that have a rather rugged texture and faded colors.

In terms of design, the pottery’s appearance is also ancient-looking, resembling jars, bottles and kitchenware that are commonly found in archaeological sites. There is also some vintage-looking pottery that has been naturally processed, such as gentong (water containers) adorned in moss and ferns so that they look like 100-year old items. Several statues made by Agus can also be found standing outside his house without any cover while waiting for buyers to pick them up to add a natural rustic appearance.

Read also: Klipoh, under the radar pottery village in Magelang

Agus, who has been working on pottery art for the past 10 years, told The Jakarta Post that his idea of rustic pottery came from his hobby of collecting vintage items. He started producing rustic-style pottery in the past three years.

"Rustic pottery is not yet popular in the local market; perhaps since the image of pottery in general is smooth and shiny looking with bright colors. But fortunately this type of pottery is very much appreciated in Europe, especially by art lovers in the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal, Canada, even the United States," said Agus.

He adds that the European market prefers the vintage-style pottery since it fits with their homes’ interior design style, which is mostly modern minimalist.

As for the local market, rustic pottery is mostly popular among hotel or cafe businesspeople. (kes)

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