TAASA NSW TEXTILE STUDY GROUP – TAASA Review June 2019

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This article was originally found in the June 2019 edition of TAASA Review (Volume 28, Issue 2, Page 27).

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12 March 2019 Five Centuries of Tapas Safrina Thristiawati gave a fascinating talk on tapis from her homeland, the Lampung area of Sumatra, Indonesia part of ancient world trade routes.

Her presentation looked at tapis production methods, its traditional and contemporary use. Tapis was traditionally only worn by women at ceremonies like weddings but this is gradually changing, with one male politician even wearing it as part of his attire.

Today its use has extended to wall hangings and women’s accessories as designers endeavour to keep an important cultural tradition alive. Members saw 16 tapis from Safrina’s and other personal collections; tapis of silk and cotton, some with bast fibres or fine ikat work, some decorated with gold thread, mica, sequins or gold coins, others with motifs of birds, animals, stylised human figures, ships, chariots and mythical creatures...