Batik and Chinese’s Influences

This is a sarong which depicts Chinese’s old story about Hsi Wang Mu Goddess. HsiWang Mu is a goddess that lives at the west of the heaven. She, having tiger nails and leopard tail, is very dangerous because she brings diseases.


This Chinese’s old story had depicted on Oey Khing Liem’s sarong as a batik. The picture can be shown at antique online shop  and is called as batik peranakan. The maker of batik peranakan is Chinese’s (can be Dutch’s or Japanese’s) line of ancestors. The word “peranakan” has meaning as “ancestor.”
This sarong just one of Chinese’s influences on batik.  The influences of Chinese’s culture had taken place from hundreds years ago. Chinese came long time before Dutch and lived with Indonesian, blended their cultures together. It is shown on the batik, called batik encim or Chinese batik.
Encim is unfamiliar word today. Usually just to call Chinese batik. Encim has meaning as middle-age Chinese wife. To be honest, “encim” can’t be found in Mandarin Tionghoa dictionary, but it’s acculturation of language from “cici”. “Cici” is the calling for elder sister, so this is honorable calling for elder or leader women. But now it is a shifting culture because women who are called “encim” will angry because they take it as an insult.
Chinese’s batik is made by Chinese or their line of ancestors. Their influences areshown on the patterns and motifs of the batik. Usually, The Chinese love red and gold colors as show glory and prosperity.
Usually Chinese prefers to use color red and gold, which show glory and prosperity. Chinese’s motifs are such as dragon, lion, hong bird (Phoenix), peony flower, turtle, Kirin (lion headed dog), god and goddess, and another motifs on Chinese’s ceramic. Sometimes blue or red clouds also depict in Chinese’s batik.
Note the dragon, peonies, and also kirin as its motifs. This is Palembang batik. Palembang is one of big anchorage city in Indonesia. There are Chinese’s and Arabic’s villages. Their cultures influence and blend with local people become one of Indonesia’s culture.
These pictures below, is showing peonies and how it is being drew. Encim batik also have been affected by another culture, as Dutch.
The peonies are one of the Chinese’s motifs of batik. The encim batik which has chili color show peonies which arrange as a bouquet. The bouquet motif itself is Dutch’s  batik characteristic. The other encim batik also has peonies motif. The color is called “dodol”. Dodol is the name of food which has  yellow color but has a dark brown crust.

Categories: Batik

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