T E XTIL E S IN T H E SY M BOLI C UNI V E RS E OF BALI – TAASA Review September 2014

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This article was originally found in the September 2014 edition of TAASA Review (Volume 23, Issue 3, Page 7).

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Siobhan Campbell T he range of motifs, techniques and materials characterising Balinese textiles belong to a vast universe of symbolic meaning.

As a place, the island of Bali is a potent symbol in itself: paradise to foreigners enchanted by the people and culture, to others an untainted society shaped by the adoption of Indic models of kingship and Hindu Buddhist worldviews or a Hindu enclave in a majority Muslim Indonesia.

From a historical perspective, the narrative, symbolic and ornamental features of Balinese woven, embroidered and painted cloths are testimony to the movements of people, goods and ideas along the trade routes of Southeast Asia...