Thousands of people thronged the main avenue, Jl. Slamet Riyadi, in Surakarta, Central Java, recently to watch the fifth Solo Batik Carnival (SBC). Solo is the cultural name of Surakarta.
The carnival began with 250 participants presenting the dance display “Batik Metamorphosis” at Sriwedari Stadium; metamorphosis being the theme of the event. As the theme implied, the show portrayed, through costumes and dance, the many phases of batik making: motif drawing on white cloth, wax treatment, coloring, wax removal and finally finishing the cloth.
Today, batik motifs are not limited to classical patterns but combine modern and traditional elements. In the carnival, the batiks on show were packed with new creations and exploration of materials, design and finished products. Contemporary designers have turned previously formal batik garments into inimitable and extraordinary ...