We acknowledge the Gadigal of the Eora Nation, the traditional custodians of the Country on which the Art Gallery of NSW stands.


Skirt cloth (kain panjang)

mid 20th century


No image
  • Details

    Place where the work was made
    Pekalongan Central Java Java Indonesia
    Cultural origin
    Peranakan Chinese
    mid 20th century
    Media category
    Materials used
    cotton, dyes; batik
    201.5 x 108.5 cm (irreg.)
    Gift of John Yu and George Soutter 2008
    Not on display
    Accession number
    Artist information
    Liem Kwat Beng workshop

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Across Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore communities of integrated heritage are known by the Malay word peranakan (descendent). Peranankan Chinese also known as Straits Chinese are personified by the Baba-Nonya (Grandfather-Grandmother). Generally, Peranakan Chinese communities are made up of the descendants of the marriage between Chinese men and local women, where the man’s religious beliefs remain dominant while the woman’s cultural traits prevail. At the beginning of the 20th century four main Peranakan Chinese communities were linked by maritime routes from the island of Penang on the west coast of Peninsular Malaysia down to Malacca, then Singapore and Pekalongan on the north coast of Java. The first three communities are known to have produced beautiful silver ware, furniture, and embroidery yet they are not known to have produced batik. As such batik industries on the north coast of Java were central in the design, manufacture and supply of batik to the other three peranakan port communities.