Classical Painting in Bali, Indonesia

The area around Ubud is known for both traditional and contemporary painting. Several excellent local museums exhibit the painting and include information about their development.

The Astrological Chart below was painted with natural pigments, tempera, and ink on cloth by I Nyoman Arcana in Kamasan, Bali. The Balinese system of astrology has 35 constellations that change daily. The bottom row is unfinished to show the painting process.

Astrological Chart, 2004, in the Neka Museum, Ubud.

The outlines of pencil sketches are inked. . .

. . .then light colors or added. . .

. . .then dark colors and rich accents. . .

. . . the inked details are added . . .

. . . then the Balinese script.

Kadek Natha's art supply store, studio, and showroom are at Br Sangging Kamasan, Klungklung, Bali, Indonesia, phone: (0366) 25065.

Kadek and his wife work together. They size the cotton cloth with rice starch, draw the image with a pencil, ink over pencil lines, then fill in the colors with a combination of gouache, watercolor, and hand-ground Chinese paint.

Made Rudita paints in Batuan, Bali, then sells his work to tourists in Ubud.

Made draws the image on a piece of prepared cloth as his assistant traces over the lines with black India ink in a bamboo pen. Another bamboo tool is used to shade the gray areas by smudging the ink.

Some monochromatic paintings are highlighted with gold paint that is mixed as needed, while others are polychromed with watercolor.

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Batik in Bali and Java, Indonesia  
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The Indonesian Kris 
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Recommended Guides:
Competent bilingual guides (with their own vehicles) are essential. Mr. Ignatius (Telephone 0816 683 202) was my excellent guide in Java. Rudy (arranged through Tutut) was my fabulous guide in Bali.

Recommended Books:
Batik: The Impact of Time and Environment, by H. Santosa Doella, published by Danar Hadi, Surakarta, Java, Indonesia, 2002, ISBN 979-97173-1-0.
Batik: Design, Style, and History, by Fiona Kerlogue, published by Thames & Hudson, London, 2004, ISBN 0-500-28477-6.

Web page, photographs, and text by Carol Ventura in 2007. Please look at Carol's home page to see more about crafts around the world.