Borderless Batik – JIBB

Madam Umi Al Farisi showing Princess Swati Dlamini Mandela the art of Batik

9 November 2021

South African national hero, Nelson Mandela and global freedom icon was fond of batik shirts and they became his signature style. This is just one example of the global popularity and recognition of Indonesian Batik. In 2009 UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) acknowledged Batik as a masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity.

Borderless Batik was the theme for the 2021 JIBB (Jogja International Batik Biennale). The event was a virtual and live hybrid event with the participation of 23 countries around the globe. In South Africa Ambassador Salman Al Farisi of Indonesia hosted Princess Swati Dlamini Mandela, granddaughter of Nelson and Winnie Mandela, at his residence in Pretoria to honour the event. Dlamini Mandela and invited guests were treated to Indonesian music, fashion and food.

Madam Umi Al Farisi and the staff assisted guests to make their own batik work and experience the making of the art for themselves. Using a canting, a spouted tool filled with hot wax, designs are marked out to separate the rich and vibrant colours. The cloth is then boiled to remove the wax leaving the patterns behind.
Photo left: (l-r) Colonel Navy Rolly Stephanus Rore, Indonesian Defense Attache, Ambassador U Myint Swe of Myanmar, Ambassador Salman Al Farisi of Indonesia, Ambassador Hoang Van Loi of Vietnam, High Commissioner Zainal Arif Mantaha of Singapore and Paisit Boonparlit, Chargé d’affaires of Thailand.
Photo right: Ambassador Salman Al Farisi interacting with guests
Photo left: Thabiso Magodielo, Travel Specialist at The Diplomatic Society, Princess Swati Dlamini Mandela and Jayshree Padayatchey from Shakti Empowerment
Photo right: Madam Umi Al Farisi with guests posing with their works of art.

Yogyakarta was named World Batik City by the World Craft Council (WCC) in 2014 to ensure the continuation and heritage of this art form and to develop it in the current fashion era.