History of Angklung (Indonesian Traditional Music Instrument)

History of Angklung

The word Angklung originated from two words angka and lungAngka means “tone”, and lung means “broken” or “lost”. Angklung then means as an incomplete tone.


(Angklung with eight pitches)

Angklung is a musical instrument made out of two bamboo tubes attached to a bamboo frame. The tubes are carved so that they have a resonant pitch when struck. The two tubes are tuned to octaves. The base of the frame is held with one hand while the other hand shakes the instrument rapidly from side to side. This causes a rapidly repeating note to sound. Thus each of three or more angklung performers in an ensemble will play just one note and together complete melodies are produced.Angklung is popular throughout Southeast Asia, but originated fromIndonesia and it has been used and played by the Sundanese since the ancient times.

In the Hindu period and the era of the Kingdom of Sunda, the angklung played an important role in ritual ceremonies such as ngaseuk pare,nginebkeun parengampihkeun pareseren taunheleran, etc. These ceremonies were inherent to Sundanese communities; in courtly and everyday living. In its function as the ritual medium, the angklung was played to honor Dewi Sri, the goddess of fertility, in a hope that their life and land will be blessed. Angklung is also used to signal time for prayer[citation needed]. Later, in Kingdom of Sunda these instruments were used as martial music in the Bubat War (Perang Bubat) as told in the Kidung Sunda.

The angklung functioned to build community spirit. Because of this, the playing of the angklung was forbade during the Dutch occupation of Indonesia. Because of this, the popularity of the instrument decreased and it came to be played only by children.[citation needed]

The oldest angklung still exist is called Angklung Gubrag. The angklung was made in the 17th century in Jasinga, Bogor. Nowadays, some of those older angklung remain in Sri Bduga Museum, Bandung.

As time flown by, the angklung received a more international attention. In 1938, Daeng Soetigna, from Bandung, created angklung that is based on the diatonic scale instead of the traditional pélogor sléndro scales. Since then, angklung has been used for educational and entertainment purposes and are able to accompany western music instruments in an orchestra. One of the first well-known performances of angklung in an orchestra was during the Bandung Conference in 1955.Udjo Ngalagena, a student of Daeng Soetigna, opened his “Saung Angklung” (House of Angklung) in 1966 as a centre for its development.

File:COLLECTIE TROPENMUSEUM Jonge angklungspelers West-Java TMnr 10017867.jpg

UNESCO designated angklung as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity on November 18, 2010. As part of the acknowledgment, UNESCO insisted that Indonesia preserve their heritage.

More Pictures of Indonesian Tribes’ Traditional & Wedding Dress

Additional Traditional & Wedding Dress of Indonesian Tribes

(Thanks to Bambang Priantono for the pictures)

Aneuk Jamee, Nangroe Aceh Darussalam

Alas traditional costume, NAD

Mandailing, North Sumatera

Karo, North Sumatera

Nias, North Sumatera

Kerinci traditional dress, Jambi

Bengkulu Malay                               Pasemah, South Sumatera

Solok style, West Sumatera      Rejang costume, Bengkulu

Palembang wedding dress

Palembang wedding dress with hijab


Lampung girl

Betawian wedding dress

Combination between Arabic, Chinese, Javanese, Malay, European and Sundanese elements


Classical Sundanese wedding dress

Other Sundanese wedding dress

Sumedang Larang wedding dress, West – Java

Abah-abah bondan, Cirebon

Royal Cirebon wedding dress

Yogyakarta wedding dress (basahan)

Jogjakarta Wedding dress

Yogyakarta traditional dress

Kudus traditional dress, Central Java

Mojoputri wedding dress, East Java

It is originated of Mojokerto regency, East Java. Based on Majapahit culture

Osing wedding dress, Banyuwangi –  East Java

Banyuwangi brides

Sumenep Madurese wedding dress

Madurese traditional dress

Kolonedale, Central Sulawesi

Assorted from South East Sulawesi

Pamona girls, Central Sulawesi

Bugis costumes, South Sulawesi

Mamasa costume, West Sulawesi

Balinese traditional dress

Gandrung Lombok dress

Sasak dress, W. Nusa Tenggara

Bima traditional dress, NTB

Dompu traditional dress, NTB

Sumbawa wedding dress, NTB

Kutai royal wedding dress, East Kalimantan

Samarinda Buginese dress

Buginese in East Kalimantan developed their own style in wedding dress, and different to their ancestral land
West Kalimantan Dayak dress
Central Kalimantan Dayak dress
Banjarese costumes, South Kalimantan
Malay and Dayak, West Kalimantan
South East Moluccas
South East Maluku
North Moluccas
North Moluccas


Reog Ponorogo

Reog Ponorogo :


The dance known as Reog is a very spectacular dance with several dancers wearing bright colorful costumes accompanied by merry gamelan music.

It is always played in the open terrain, such as in a square, street etc. This dance which always draws a lot of spectators is a traditional art dance combined with magical show or a trance dance.

The reog dates back during the Hindu period in East Java. The story is related with the legend in Ponorogo Kingdom (+/- 70 km South East of Solo). Nowadays reog dance groups can be found also in other regions of Solo, Yogya, Other Towns in East Java, Kalimantan, Jakarta, even in Suriname. One of the famous group is Reog Prambanan in the border of Yogyakarta – Solo.

The Story

The powerful King Kelono Sewandono of Ponorogo Kingdom was famous with his fighting skills and magical power, accompanied by his Patih (Prime Minister) Bujanganom & his strong soldiers were attacked by King Singabarong, The King of Lions of Kediri Jungle, supported by his army, consisted of Lions and Peacocks.

At that time the Ponorogo’s group were on the way to The Kingdom of Kediri guarding King Sewandono to marry Dewi Ragil Kuning, a princess of Kediri Kingdom.

There was a big fight between mighty warriors having magical power. The peacocks flew up and down flapping their wings to support The Lions – Singa Barong.

Bujanganom with his magic whip, supported by some Waroks in black traditional dress defeated The King Lion with all his followers.

The King of Ponorogo and his soldiers merrily continued their way to Kediri on horse back. Singa Barong joint the procession The Peacocks kept close to Singa Barong opened their tail feathers which looked like beautiful fan. (Warok of Ponorogo is a man with strong magical power, always dresses in black costumes).

The Performance

The central figure of this dance is The Lion King Singa Barong represented by a dancer wearing a mask of a Lion carrying a large peacock feather fan on top of the mask (this mask is locally called : Topeng Dadak Merak). It weight around 50 kg. The dancer has to use his teeth to hold the mask from inside.

He must has  a very strong set of teeth and neck to move around the mask Dadak Merak. On top of this, he has also to carry a lady representing Princess Ragil Kuning. Or sometimes, he has to demonstrate his skill and strength by carrying another mask dancer on top of him, and still he could dance with vigorous and fantastic movements.

King Kelono Sewandono wearing a mask and a crown is a stylish dancer, Bujanganom also wearing a mask is an acrobatic dancer.

The Waroks in black costumes,

Jatilan – good looking young soldiers riding flat bamboo horses (Kuda Kepang).

Caplokan – Wears a dragon mask to lure Singa Barong to dance more livelly.

Reog-Ponorogo.jpg Reog Ponorogo image by sukandar_ag

reogponorogo2.jpg Reog Ponorogo image by helmikurniawan

reogponorogo4.jpg Reog Ponorogo image by helmikurniawan

reogponorogo.jpg Reog Ponorogo image by helmikurniawan

reog.jpg REOG PONOROGO image by haris_055

eog Ponorogo - traditional indonesia art from ponorogo, west java

Reog Ponorogo - Dancer eat snake

Reog Ponorogo an traditional dance from east java

Reog Ponorogo

The Art of Reog Ponorogo at Madania School, Indonesia (3)


Masks From Cirebon

Topeng(Mask) Panji          Topeng Rumyang

Topeng Samba                       Topeng Tumenggung

Topeng Kelana

Dedi Sambudi (53 years old) from Gegesik – Cirebon – The Mask Maker

Aerli Rasinah: The new face of the Cirebon mask dance

| Sun, 06/29/2008 10:56 AM | Life

Mimi Rasinah's granddaughter Aerli Rasinah (right) prays at Sunan Gunung Jati's tomb with her mother. Aerli has been given the responsibility to preserve the Cirebon mask dance. (Courtesy of Kamabudaya)

Mimi Rasinah’s granddaughter Aerli Rasinah (right) prays at Sunan Gunung Jati’s tomb with her mother. Aerli has been given the responsibility to preserve the Cirebon mask dance. (Courtesy of Kamabudaya)

Wearing the red mask of Kelana, a character from the traditional Cirebon mask dance, 22-year-old Aerli Rasinah danced vigorously on stage. Stamping her foot and moving her shoulders and hands in time to the percussion, she looked like a brave warrior from a wayang story.

The granddaughter of maestro mask dancer, Mimi Rasinah, 78, had just received the mandate to continue the Cirebon mask dance tradition from Mimi herself.

On stage, in the courtyard of the 16th century Cirebon founder and Islam propagator Sunan Gunung Jati, witnessed by her pupils and hundreds in the audience, Rasinah bestowed her five masks and her blessings to Aerli.

Being born into a family of dancers, Aerli has taken on the great responsibility to preserve the tradition of dance.

“It’s a heavy task. But I’ll try my best,” she said on the back stage, wiping off her sweat after dancing.

Rasinah inherited the skill to dance from her father Lastra. In 2005, she suffered a stroke and is now paralyzed on the left side of her body. She passed on the skills to her daughter and grandchildren.

“This will be my legacy before I die,” Mimi said.

Aerli’s mother, Waci, who has also mastered the Cirebon mask dance, said the family chose Aerli to take on Mimi Rasinah’s responsibilities because Aerli was still young and had lots of time to develop the tradition in the future.

Mimi Rasinah gives her blessing to Aerli Rasinah to continue the tradition of the Cirebon mask dance. (Courtesy of Kamabudaya)

Dancing maestro Mimi Rasinah dead at 80

Nana Rukmana, The Jakarta Post, Cirebon | Sun, 08/08/2010 5:35 PM | Headlines

Mimi Rasinah (Kompas.com)

Mimi Rasinah (Kompas.com)

Cirebon mask dance maestro Mimi Rasinah died Saturday after suffering a stroke. She was 80.

Hundreds of traditional dancers and pilgrims paid their last respects to the late Mimi at her funeral at Ciweni hamlet public cemetery in Pekandangan village, Indramayu, West Java, on Sunday afternoon.

Many visitors brought to the funeral masks worn by Mimi throughout her career.

Rasinah’s granddaughter Aerli Rasinah, 24, said Mimi passed away at 2 p.m. on Saturday at Indramayu General Hospital.

“When we admitted her to the hospital, she was in a very poor condition. Mimi was treated for about five minutes before she passed away,” she added.


foto festival tari topeng

CIREBON, 17/10 – ITS MASK FESTIVAL 2010. Dancers bring Mask Dance, Dance Single or Ngedok from Jakarta in the evening peak Mask Festival Nusantara 2010, in Cirebon, West Java, on Saturday (16/10). Mask Festival 2010 Nusantara function saw the presence and position of the archipelago in the constellation of art mask Indonesian arts and culture. AFP PHOTO / Rosa Panggabean/ed/pd/10.

foto festival tari topeng

Jepara (central Java) Wood Carving Art

Jepara (Central Java) Wood Carving Art

JEPARA, a place where carving-art was born and becomes the advantage-characteristic of Jepara. Talented carver generations has been appearing naturally since XVI century on the village, the sources of inspiration, as well as the centre of learning for others all around Jepara. (read : the endless forest ) has been growing since 1960’s in the local original colour, inspired by the native carvers of Jepara. creations are made by optimizing woods (roots, braches), without damaging or wasting natural forest. Through the importers from USA, English, Korea, China, Kuwait, Spain, Germany, Malaysia, Singapore, and some others our products have been widely spreading. Our production capacity is willing to serve customers by certain quality, quantity, and continuity. Supporting by a lot of material, skillful carvers, and located on the center of carving home industri We create one of a kind artwork and sculpture masterworks in :
ROOT ARTS CARVED many of which are replicas of rare pieces. We offer original carvings, supreme statues and decorative sculptures and artwork crafted by genius JAVA and JEPARA artists. Custom commissioned designs, replicas and sculpture fabrication is available on request. Sculpture Arts: Ancient Greeks’ depiction of ideal form of the body is expressed through sculpture such as this one. Sculpture is any three-dimensional form created as an artistic expression. The term sculpture also refers to the artistic discipline, act or art of making sculpture, by the manipulation of materials or, in contemporary art, by designating an object or even an act as sculpture.
Relief Carving

Relief CarvingRelief CarvingRelief Carving

Relief Carving

Last Supper

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Relief Carving

Balinese Art

Balinese art

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Balinese art is art of HinduJavanese origin that grew from the work of artisans of the Majapahit Kingdom, with their expansion to Bali in the late 13th century. From the sixteenth until the twentieth centuries, the village of Kamasan, Klungkung (East Bali), was the centre of classical Balinese art. During the first part of the twentieth century, new varieties of Balinese art developed. Since the late twentieth century, Ubud and its neighboring villages established a reputation as the center of Balinese art. Ubud and Batuan are known for their paintings, Mas for their woodcarvings, Celuk for gold and silver smiths, and Batubulan for their stone carvings. Covarrubiasdescribes Balinese art as, “… a highly developed, although informal Baroque folk art that combines the peasant liveliness with the refinement of classicism of Hinduistic Java, but free of the conservative prejudice and with a new vitality fired by the exuberance of the demonic spirit of the tropical primitive.” Eiseman correctly pointed out that Balinese art is actually carved, painted, woven, and prepared into objects intended for everyday use rather than asobject d ‘art.

Recent history

Prior to 1920s, Balinese traditional paintings were restricted to what is now known as the Kamasan or Wayang style. It is a visual narrative of Hindu-Javanese epics: the Ramayana and Mahabharata, as well as a number of indigenous stories, such as the Panji narrative. These two-dimensional drawings are traditionally drawn on cloth or bark paper (Ulantaga paper) with natural dyes. The coloring is limited to available natural dyes: red, ochre, black, etc. In addition, the rendering of the figures and ornamentations must follow strictly prescribed rules, since they are mostly produced for religious articles and temple hangings. These paintings are produced collaboratively, and therefore mostly anonymously.

There were many experiments with new types of art by Balinese from the late nineteenth century onwards. These experiments were stimulated by access to new materials (western paper and imported inks and paint), and by the 1930s, new tourist markets stimulated many young Balinese to be involved in new types of art.

In the 1920s, with the arrival of many western artists, Bali became an artist enclave (as Tahiti was for Paul Gauguin) for avant-garde artists such as Walter Spies (German), Rudolf Bonnet (Dutch), Adrien-Jean Le Mayeur (Belgian), Arie Smit (Dutch) and Donald Friend (Australian) in more recent years. Most of these western artists had very little influence on the Balinese until the post-World War Two period, although some accounts over-emphasise the western presence at the expense of recognising Balinese creativity.

On his first visit to Bali in 1930, the Mexican artist Miguel Covarrubias noted that local paintings served primarily religious or ceremonial functions. They were used as decorative cloths to be hung in temples and important houses, or as calendars to determine children’s horoscopes. Yet within a few years, he found the art form had undergone a “liberating revolution.” Where they had once been severely restricted by subject (mainly episodes from Hindu mythology) and style, Balinese artists began to produce scenes from rural life. These painters had developed increasing individuality.

This groundbreaking period of creativity reached a peak in the late 1930s. A stream of famous visitors, including Charlie Chaplin and theanthropologists Gregory Bateson and Margaret Mead, encouraged the talented locals to create highly original works. During their stay in Bali in mid 1930s, Bateson and Mead collected over 2000 paintings, predominantly from the village of Batuan, but also from the coastal village of Sanur. Among western artists, Spies and Bonnet are often credited for the modernization of traditional Balinese paintings. From the 1950s onwards Baliese artists incorporated aspects of perspective and anatomy from these artists.  More importantly, they acted as agents of change by encouraging experimentation, and promoted departures from tradition. The result was an explosion of individual expression that increased the rate of change in Balinese art. The 1930s styles were consolidated in the 1950s, and in more recent years have been given the confusing title of “modern traditional Balinese painting”. The Ubud painters, although a minority amongst the artists working in the 1930s, became the representatives of the new style thanks to the presence of the great artist Gusti Nyoman Lempad in that village, and to the patronage of the traditional rulers of Ubud. The key points of the Ubud Style included a concentration on the depiction of daily Bali life and drama; the change of the patron of these artists from the religious temples and royal houses to western tourists/collectors; shifting the picture composition from multiple to single focus. Despite the adoption of modern western painting traditions by many Balinese and Indonesianpainters, “modern traditional Balinese painting” is still thriving and continues by descendants/students of the artists of the pre-war modernist era (1928-1942). The schools of modern traditional Balinese painting include: Ubud, Batuan, Sanur, Young Artist and Keliki schools of painting.

Modern traditional painting

The pre-War modernisation of Bainese art emanated from three villages: Ubud, where Spies settled, Sanur on the southern coast, and Batuan, a traditional hub of musicians, dancers, carvers and painters. The artists painted mostly on paper, though canvas and board were also used. Often, the works featured repetitive clusters of stylized foliage or waves that conveyed a sense of texture, even perspective. Each village evolved a style of its own. Ubud artists made more use of open spaces and emphasized human figures. Sanur paintings often featured erotic scenes and animals, and work from Batuan was less colorful but tended to be busier.

Ubud painting


Mask Dancer, A.A. Gde Anom Sukawati (b. 1966), Acrylic on canvas

Ubud has been the center of art for centuries, with the surrounding royal houses and temples as the main patrons. Prior to the 1920s, traditional wayang style paintings dominated the subject matters, although Jean Couteau believes that both secular and religious theme paintings have long been co-existing in the form of the expression of the unity of opposites (Rwabhinneda in Balinese belief system).

Under the patronage of the Ubud royal family, esepcially Tjokorda Gde Agung Sukawati, and with Rudolf Bonnet as a chief consultant, the Pitamaha Art Guild was founded in 1936 as a way to professionalise Balinese painting. Its mission was to preserve the quality of Balinese Art in the rush of tourism to Bali. The board members of Pitamaha met regularly to select paintings submitted by its members, and to conduct exhibitions throughout Indonesia and abroad. Pitamaha was active until the beginning of the second world war in 1942.The subject matters shifted from religious narration to Balinese daily life. Ubud artists who were members to Pitamaha came from Ubud and its surrounding villages; Pengosekan, Peliatan and Tebasaya. Among them were: Ida Bagus Made Kembeng of the village of Tebesaya and his three sons Ida Bagus Wiri, Ida Bagus Made and Ida Bagus Belawa; Tjokorda Oka of the royal house of Peliatan; Anak Agung Gde Sobrat, Anak Agung Gde Meregeg, I Dewa Putu Bedil, I Dewa Nyoman Leper, Anak Agung Dana of Padangtegal; I Gusti Ketut Kobot, I Gusti Made Baret, I Wayan Gedot, Dewa Putu Mokoh of Pengosekan; and I Gusti Nyoman Lempad. Artists from other areas also participated, including Pan Seken from Kamasan, I Gusti Made Deblog from Denpasar, and some of the Sanur artists.

Pitamaha has been by the descendents of the Ubud artists, and has now come to be identified with the period of the 1930s. Noted Ubudian artists include I Ketut Budiana, I Nyoman Meja, I Nyoman Kayun, A.A. Gde Anom Sukawati, I Gusti Agung Wiranata, and Ida Bagus Sena

Batuan painting

The Batuan school of painting is practiced by artists in the village of Batuan, which is situated ten kilometers to the South of Ubud. The Batuan artisans are gifted dancers, sculptors and painters. Leading artists of the 1930s included I Nyoman Ngendon, and a number of members of leading brahman families, including Ida Bagus Made Togog. Other major Batuan artists from the pre-modernist era include I Dewa Nyoman Mura (1877-1950) and I Dewa Putu Kebes (1874-1962), who were known as sanging; traditional Wayang-style painters for temples’ ceremonial textiles.

The western influence in Batuan did not reach the intensity it had in Ubud. According to Claire Holt, the Batuan paintings were often dark, crowded representations of either legendary scenes or themes from daily life, but they portrayed above all fearsome nocturnal moments when grotesque spooks, freakish animal monsters, and witches accosted people. This is particularly true for paintings collected by Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson during their field studies in Bali in 1936 to 1939.Gradations of black to white ink washes laid over most of the surface, so as to create an atmosphere of darkness and gloom. In the later years, the designs covered the entire space, which often contributed to the crowded nature of these paintings.


The Wheel of Life, I Ketut Murtika (b. 1952), Gouache on canvas

Among the early Batuan artists, I Ngendon (1903-1946) was considered the most innovative Batuan School painter.[4] Ngendon was not only a good painter, but a shrewd business man and political activist. He encouraged and mobilized his neighbours and friends to paint for tourist consumption. His ability in portraiture played an important role in teaching his fellow villagers in Batuan more than Spies and Bonnet.The major Batuan artists from this period were: I Patera (1900-1935), I Tombos (b. 1917), Ida Bagus Togog (1913-1989), Ida Bagus Made Jatasura (1917-1946), Ida Bagus Ketut Diding (1914-1990), I Made Djata (1920-2001), and Ida Bagus Widja (1912-1992). The spirit of the Pitamaha period is still strong and continues by contemporary Batuan Artists such as I Made Budi , I Wayan Bendi (b. 1950), I Ketut Murtika (b. 1952), I Made Sujendra (b. 1964), and many others. I Made Budi and I Wayan Bendi paintings capture the influence of tourism in modern life in Bali. They place tourists with their camera, riding a motorbike or surfing in the midst of Balinese traditional village activities. The dichotomy of modern and traditional Balinese life are contrasted starkly in harmony. I Ketut Murtika ( still paints the traditional story of Mahabharata and Ramayana in a painstaking details with subdued colors. His painting of the Wheel of Life viewed from the Balinese beliefs system shows his mastery of local legends and painstaking attention to details. I Made Sujendra, an art teacher at a local art school, depicts old Balinese folklore with a modern eye and a high degree of individuality. Rejecting excessive decoration and relying on the composition itself, I Made Sujendra is successful in depicting tensions in his work and the old Batuan style of 1930s.

Sanur painting

Unlike Ubud and Batuan which are located in the inland of Bali, Sanur is a beach resort. Sanur was the home of the well known Belgian artist Le Mayeur de Mepres, who lived with a Balinese wife (Ni Polok) and had a beach house in Sanur beach.

Tourists in 1930s came to Bali on cruise ships docked in Sanur and made side trips to Ubud and neighboring tourist sites. Its prime location provided the Sanur artist with ready-access to Western tourists who frequented the shop of the Neuhaus Brothers who sold balinese souvenirs and tropical fishes. Neuhaus brothers became the major art dealer of Sanur paintings. The beach around Sanur, full of outriggers and open horizon, provided local artists with a visual environment different from the Ubud and Batuan, which are located in the hinterland.The playful atmosphere pervades the Sanur paintings, and are not dictated by the religious iconography[5]. It is lighter and airy than those of Batuan and Ubud with sea creatures, erotic scenery and wild animals drawn in rhythmic patterns; often in an Escher-like manner.Most early works were black and white ink wash on paper, but at the request of Neuhaus, latter works were adorned with light pastel colors often added by other artists specializing in coloring a black and white drawings. Their name code is often found at the margin.

The Sanur school of painting is the most stylized and decorative among all modern Balinese Art. Major artists from Sanur are I Rundu, Ida Bagus Nyoman Rai, I Soekaria, I Poegoeg, I Rudin, and many others. I Rudin, who started to paint in mid 1930s, draws simple balinese dancers in the manner of the drawings of Miguel Covarrubias.

Young Artist painting

The development of the Young Artist School of painting is attributed to the Dutch artist Arie Smit, a Dutch soldier who served during the 2nd world war and decided to stay in Bali. In the early 1960s, he came across children in the village of Penestanan near Tjampuhan drawing on the sand. He encouraged these children to paint by providing them with paper and paints.

Their paintings are characterized by “child-like” drawings that lacks details and bright colors drawn with oil paint on canvas. By 1970s, it attracted around three hundred peasant painters to produce paintings for tourists. In 1983, the National Gallery of Malaysia held a major exhibition on the Young Artist paintings from the collection of Datuk Lim Chong Kit.


The snake tree, I Wayan Pugur, Gouache on paper

The painting by I Wayan Pugur (b. 1945) shown here, was executed when he was 13 years old and was exhibited at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 1964, as part of a traveling exhibition in the United States in 1964-1965. This early drawing, executed on paper, exhibits the use of bright colors and a balanced composition. The drawing space is divided into three solid-color areas: dark blue, bright yellow and magenta in between showing the influence of the Wayang painting tradition. The leaves of the large tree with the snakes show the juxtaposition of complementary colors. The faces of the figures were drawn with no details, yet the snakes have eyes and long tongues.

Major artists from the Young Artist School are I Wayan Pugur, I Ketut Soki, I Ngurah KK, I Nyoman Londo, I Ketut Tagen, I Nyoman Cakra, Ni Ketut Gampil, I Nyoman Mundik, I Wayan Regog and many others.
tKeliki miniature painting


Rajapala, I Lunga, Watercolor on paper

In the 1970s, miniature paintings emerged from Keliki, a small village north of Ubud, led by a local farmer I Ketut Sana.[6] The sizes range from as small as 2 x 3 inch to as large as 10 x 15 in. I Ketut Sana learnt to paint from I Gusti Nyoman Sudara Lempad from Ubud and from I Wayan Rajin from Batuan. He combined the line drawing of Lempad and the details of the Batuan school. Every inch of the space is covered with minute details of Balinese village life and legends drawn in ink and colored with watercolor. The outcome is a marriage between the youthfulness of the Ubud school and the details of the Batuan School. The Keliki artists proud with their patience to paint minute details of every objects meticulously that occupy the drawing space.

Illustrated on the left is a drawing by I Lunga (c. 1995) depicting the story of Rajapala. Rajapala is often referred to as the first Balinese voyeur or “peeping Tom.” According to the story, Rajapala catches sight of a group of celestial nymphs bathing in a pool. He approaches stealthily, and without their knowledge, steals the skirt (kamben) of the prettiest, Sulaish. As her clothing contains magical powers enabling her to fly, the nymph cannot return home. Rajapala offers to marry her. She accepts on the condition that she will return to heaven after the birth of a child. With time, she and Rajapala have a healthy young son. Years pass, and one day, Sulaish accidentally discovers her clothing hidden in the kitchen. Understanding that she has been tricked, she takes leave of her husband and son and goes back to her heavenly abode.

Major artists from the Keliki Artist School are Sang Ketut Mandera (Dolit) I Ketut Sana, I Wayan Surana, I Lunga, I Wayan Nengah, I Made Ocen, I Made Widi, I Wayan Lanus, Ida Bagus Putra, Sang Nyoman Kardiana (Sabuh) and many others.

Wood carving


Woodcarving of an elderly Balinese lady (art deco style), c. 1930s

Like the Balinese painting, Balinese wood carving underwent a similar transformation during the 1930s and 1940s. The creative outburst emerged during this transition period is often attributed to western influences. In 2006, an exhibition at the Nusantara Museum, Delft, the Netherlands Leidelmeijer traced the Art Deco influence on Balinese wood carving. Leidelmeijer further conjectured that the Art Deco influence continued well into 1970s.

During the transition years, the Pitamaha Artist Guild was the prime mover not only for Balinese paintings, but also for the development of modern Balinese wood carvings. I Tagelan (1902-1935) produced an elongated carving of a Balinese woman from a long piece of wood that was given by Walter Spies, who originally requested him to produce two statues. This carving is in the collection of the Puri Lukisan Museum in Ubud.


Dewi Gadru by Ida Bagus Tilem, c. 1950s

Other masters of Balinese modernist woodcarving were: Ida Bagus Nyana, Tjokot (1886-1971)and Ida Bagus Tilem.

Ida Bagus Nyana was known for experimenting with mass in sculpture. When carving human characters, he shortened some parts of the body and lengthened others, thus bringing an eerie, surreal quality to his work. At the same time he didn’t overwork the wood and adopted simple, naive themes of daily life. He thus avoided the “baroque” trap, unlike many carvers of his day.

Tjokot gained a reputation for exploiting the expressive quality inherent in the wood. He would go into the forest to look for strangely shaped trunks and branches and, changing them as little as possible, transforming them into gnarled spooks and demonic figures.

Ida Bagus Tilem, the son of Nyana, furthered Nyana and Tjokot’s innovations both in his working of the wood and in his choice of themes. Unlike the sculptors from the previous generation, he was daring enough to alter the proportions of the characters depicted in his carving. He allowed the natural deformations in the wood to guide the form of his carving, using gnarled logs well suited for representing twisted human bodies. He saw each deformed log or branch as a medium for expressing human feelings. Instead of depicting myths or scenes of daily life, Tilem took up “abstract” themes with philosophical or psychological content: using distorted pieces of wood that are endowed with strong expressive powers. Ida Bagus Tilem, however, was not only an artist, but also a teacher. He trained dozens of young sculptors from the area around the village of Mas. He taught them how to select wood for its expressive power, and how to establish dialogue between wood and Man that has become the mainstream of today’s Balinese woodcarving.

Museums holding important Balinese painting collection

There are many museums throughout the world holding a significant collection of Balinese paintings.

  • Europe: In the Netherlands, the Tropenmuseum in Amsterdam and the Ethnographic Museum in Leiden, Museum Nusantara in Delft have a large number of paintings from the Wayang period (before 1920s) and the pre-War period (1920s – 1950s). Notably, the Leiden Ethnographic Museum holds the Rudolf Bonnet and Paul Spies collection. In Switzerland, the Ethnographic Museum in Basel holds the pre-War Batuan and Sanur paintings collected by Schlager and the artist Theo Meier.
  • Asia: In Japan, the Asian Art Museum in Fukuoka holds an excellent Balinese collection after the Second World War. The Singapore National Art Museum has significant collection of pre-War and post-War Balinese paintings.
  • Australia: The Australian Museum, Sydney, has a major collection of Kamasan and other traditional paintings assembled by the Anthropologist Anthony Forge. The National Gallery of Australia in Sydney holds some Balinese works.
  • Indonesia: the Museum Sana Budaya in Yogyakarta and Museum Bentara Budaya in Jakarta. In Bali, pre-war Balinese drawings are at the holdings of the Bali Museum in Denpasar and Center for Documentation of Balinese Culture in Denpasar. In addition, there are four major museums in Ubud, Bali, with significant collections: Museum Puri Lukisan, Agung Rai Museum of Art, Neka Museum and Museum Rudana.
  • America: Duke University Museum in Durham, American Museum of Natural History in New York, United Nations in New York.

Sundanese Wedding Ceremony

Sundanese Wedding Ceremony

Some common practices from a traditional Sundanese (West Java) wedding ceremony:

Welcoming the bridegroom ceremony

  • The bridegroom is welcomed with the umbul-umbul, a decoration indicating that a wedding ceremony is going on, which is also auspicious for the bridegroom.

  • The welcome is followed by a procession of ladies with candles. They pray to the Almighty seeking His blessing in order that there maybe no hindrances in the ceremony.
  • The showering of flowers by the dancers is symbolic of a fragrant future for the couple.
  • The umbrella held over the couple’s heads, apart from serving as a protective symbol, indicates esteem and respect.
  • The mother of the bride gives the bridegroom a garland of flowers indicating his acceptability to the family.
  • The mother of the bride gives the bridegroom a keris, a hidden message to the son-in-law not to be disheartened while toiling for his family.

Wedding ceremony

The bride and groom are seated next to each other with a selendang or veil covering their heads indicating two people but having one mind.

The bride and groom bend forward and kiss the knees of their parents, called sungkem, asking for forgiveness and blessing and reassuring them that they will continue to serve their parents.


This ceremony should take place in front of the sawer or gargoyle. The water flowing from the gargoyle indicates the continuous flow of priceless parental love for their children.

The bride and groom are seated under an umbrella in front of the entrance to the house. There are two singers, a man and a woman, who sing on behalf of the parents. The song, called kidung, advises the couple to treat each other well, living in harmony, and serves as a prayer to the Almighty to bless the couple.

Then the sawer is showered on the couple. It consists of:

Turmeric rice Rice is a sign of prosperity and yellow stands for everlasting love

Coins Reminding the couple to share their wealth with the less fortunate

Candy Indicates sweetness and fragrance throughout their marriage

A betel nut set near the couple is a reminder that their different customs should not spoil their harmonious marriage.

Nincak Endog

This is the egg breaking ceremony. The couple are required to stand facing each other in front of the entrance of the house. The bridegroom stands outside the entrance and the bride is inside the entrance.

This ceremony is conducted by the lady in charge of the bridal makeup and serves as advice to the couple for their happiness and long wedded life.

The following items are used:

a. Harupat, seven broomsticks, are burnt and thrown away symbolizing the discarding of bad habits which endanger one. s married life.

b. An egg is broken, indicating that the groom will be the master of the house henceforth and the bride will serve him.

c. Ajug, seven candles, represents the direction the couple should follow to ensure a happy married life.

d. Elekon, hollow bamboo, which symbolizes emptiness.

e. Kendi, an earthen water jug filled with water, which stands for peace.

f. In the past, unmarried girls were not allowed to cross over logs. Here the bride is made to cross the log as a sign that she will always obey her husband.

The lady in charge of the ceremony gives the bride the harupat. The groom lights the harupat with the ajug. Then the flames are put out and the sticks are broken and thrown away. After the groom breaks the egg with his right foot, the bride cleans the groom’s foot with the water from the kendi. Then the bride throws the kendi to break it.

Then the couple are escorted to the house. The bride crosses the log and enters the house while the groom remains outside to perform the buka pintu ceremony.

Buka Pintu

This is a dialogue between the bride and groom in front of the house. However, they are represented by a couple who also sings for them. First, the couple knocks three times on the door, then enters into a dialogue whereby permission is requested by the groom to enter the bride’s house. The bride consents on the condition that the groom will say the syahadat (confirming his Moslem faith). The song also solemnizes the importance of the nuptial ceremony.

Huap Lingkung

Symbolic of the last time the parents of the bride will feed their daughter. This is also the first dish prepared by the daughter in her new home. The dish consists of turmeric sticky rice with yellow spiced chicken on top of it.

The mothers of the bride and groom release two white doves – symbols of peace and happiness.

Patarik-Tarik Bakakak

The couple are given a barbecued spiced chicken. On hearing the word . go. from the lady conducting the ceremony, the couple has to pull the chicken apart. The one who gets the larger piece supposedly will bring in the larger share of the family fortune. This ceremony also serves to remind the couple to encourage each other to work hard together to gain good fortune.

Many thanks to website : http://www.expat.or.id and http://www.webway.com.au  for all the pictures and story.

Thanks and Wish you all the best for Steven & Desy