Thursday, June 2, 2011
Learning about Batik by Doing Batik
The management and staff experience great joy and satisfaction to see children and adults, Indonesians and non-Indonesians, doing batik in the premises of “Batik Popiler II. Primary school children totally immersed for hours in applying the wax on the linen and then jubilant they look at their work after the dying has been completed; visitors from Japan, America, Holland, etc even spent a few days until they have mastered the entire process of doing batik. The most rewarding experience for Batik Popiler II is the presence of the Bali Art School students spending several days practicing the art and process of doing batik.
Several experienced batik artists from Java are permanent residents of Batik Popiler II and they guide local and oversea batik students. They and a group of Balinese trained employees are in a special place at the entrance of the shop, and provide knowledge and guidance to the batik students as well as firsthand demonstration to visitors who show interest in the batik process. The benefits of hands-on learning about batik by doing batik is, in the first place, a meaningful experience because the practitioner has chosen on her/his own initiative to do so; and, secondly, the interaction with experienced masters in the art of batik as well as the exuberant batik environment that characterizes this place strengthen the practitioner’s appreciation for and perseverance in the art of batik.
Batik Popiler II opens its doors wide open to those who are interested in learning about batik by doing batik. Experience has shown to management and employees that those who have learned about batik in the Batik Popiler II premises have completed their practices with joy, enthusiasm and greater appreciation for this noble art that is so embedded in the culture of Indonesia. Learning about batik by doing batik requires humility, patience and perseverance. Humility because of the great works of batik art that others have created and we attempt to emulate; patience because only with willingness, diligence and dedication one can master this art; and perseverance because only with a steady holding on doing batik one will at the end appreciate the results; the greatest lesson to be learned about doing batik is that there is not short cut to it!
By Anibal Luis Oprandi