The Role of Indonesian Traditional Textile Craft in Contemporary Art
Engagement of craft as a medium in contemporary art is growing rapidly in the last few years, both academically as well as practically. The perspective from the field of art is important in analysing the utilisation of Indonesian traditional textile craft since many precious textile crafts in Indonesia are more popular as souvenir commodities or as fashion industry materials than as art. This paper examines the role of Indonesian traditional textile craft in contemporary art wherein traditional textile craft can have a wider appreciation, a visual language, and it can even be embedded with personal expression. Examining utilisation of traditional textile from art perspective will open possibilities to engage tradition with the process of creativity and enriches a sense of belonging to national cultural artifacts. Qualitative methodology was used in this research, with methods of collecting data in the form of interviews and documentation of artists' works. This research uses theory from visual art and craft, as well as review and analysis of artworks representing utilisation of Indonesian textile craft from artists such as Biranul Anas, Tiarma Sirait, Astari Rasjid, Caroline Rika Winata and Yinka Shonibare. Interviews with two Indonesian contemporary artists Tiarma Sirait and Caroline Rika Winata, collection of images, and published curatorial and unpublished reviews of the artists' artworks, became sources of data that was analysed by the researcher. The traditional textiles can be preserved in presenting the textile craft in contemporary art that can enhance the understanding of traditional textile craft in a wider perspective. Examining the works of contemporary artists in utilising Indonesian traditional textiles it is recommended that textile craft is a highly potential source of inspiration and medium for blending tradition into creativity in its contemporary forms.