Ceremonial lower body wrapper (kain dodot)

Batik

Indonesian (Javanese)
Dutch colonial rule
mid-19th century


Object Place: Java, Indonesia

Dimensions

210.1 x 319 cm (82 11/16 x 125 9/16 in.)

Accession Number

31.913

Medium or Technique

Cotton, natural dyes; plain weave, hand-drawn (tulis) wax-resist (batik)

Not On View

Collections

Asia, Textiles and Fashion Arts

Classifications

Costumes

Ceremonial cotton batik lower body wrapper (kain dodot) with central field (tengahan) in solid dark blue surrounded by a deep border of stylized plant, animal and temple motifs (semen pattern) in light brown and dark blue from which long, sinuous points (tjemoekirrans) extend into the center field. The piece is made of two lengths sewn together.

The semen design, which represents the rich symbolism of Javanese cosmology, is one of the “forbidden” patterns originally restricted to use by the aristocracy at court.

The kain dodot is an overskirt that is worn draped and folded, sometimes with a train. It is traditionally worn only by royalty, by the bride and groom at a wedding or other ceremonial occasions at court.

Provenance

Purchased by MFA on November 5, 1931

Credit Line

Samuel Putnam Avery Fund