Brian Stephenson Fine Art

Indonesian Tribal Art
Flores Sikka Sarong

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Flores warp ikat womans sarong or wrap (Sikka Sarong or Kelang Suster)


Item-Description:Flores warp ikat womans sarong or wrap (Sikka Sarong or Kelang Suster)
Medium:Cotton, natural dyes
Origin:Lesser Sunda Islands - Flores Sikka
Dimensions:268 x 70 cm approx.
Age:Mid 20th century
Provenance:Acquired Denpasar, Bali 1979
Condition:Excellent, no damage
Notes:Flores Island (famous as the home of the hobbit or Homo Floresiensis) cloths woven by the Sikka are noted for their delicate lace like patterning, fine linear symmetry and flower and bird motifs. This warp ikat wrap was probably woven as a wrap round sarong. It carries three bands of birds (most likely field hens) in white on a black or dark indigo ground, two bands along its top edge and one along its bottom. The prominent central band is most unusual, displaying more field hens on either side of what appears to be candelabra in a colonial Dutch style. Within the candle holders sit small mouse like creatures with large ears and a long pointed nose. The cloth also carries two bands in red (morinda) showing more birds.

This type of sarong, with a design incorporating colonial Dutch elements, is called a kelang suster, after the Dutch word 'zuster' a common term of address for a nun. Cloths like this are usually copied from crochet patterns distributed by Dutch nuns in the early 20th C. They may not be used on ceremonial occasions and are reserved for daily wear (Hoopen, P., ten, 2017).

Price: £390