Another wonderful day out with Tatang meeting batik artists; Joko, Bambang Darmo and Mr Trisno. After thanking Tatang for helping me to meet the artists last week, he said if I were free he’d be happy take me to visit a few more, how could I refuse !
First we visited Joko, a successful batik artist working in a style influenced by North African and Middle Eastern motifs. His colours are rich and deep and the designs bold and patterned.
Three women were waxing his designs, apparently Joko draws it out and does the complicate parts, then the women he employs “fill in “, after which he does all the dyeing. As far as I could see the women I photographed were working on very fine detail.
Later I saw a design resembling a sarong I had bought from Leksa Ganesha Gallery, I realised it was by Joko.
The next artist I met was Bambang Darmo a real character certainly living up to his name ! Large and jovial he works in rainbow colours in an unconstrained, expressive manner including masks, women and fish as subject matter, to name only a few.
His studio was a lush garden surrounded by open out buildings, opposite his beautiful, original old Javenese style home. He also had a large wooden barn like building where he stored his many oil and acrylic paintings.
His work was very experimental, some times collaging batik and painting. We talked together about working styles and both agreed that mixing batik and acrylic paint was uncomfortable for us, although I thought he had some successful examples. Again, so lovely to find similarities of experience, technique and opinion.
When seeing my work he told me I had much more patience than him ; I noted that he too had three lady helpers and a male dye technician!
Our third visit was to a batik artist famous in the 1970s, Mr Trisno whose fluid line and bold colours made lively images of dancing girls, birds and flowers.
He was a sparkly eyed, gentle mannered man, pleased to show me his work. He told me I had just missed the ladies who helped with the canting work, so no pictures of them. Mr Trisno has had several exhibitions in Europe and America and one had just ended in Madrid.
All these batik artists with wonderfully skilled helpers, I would love to have that sort of help, it would definitely increase my output !