Conrad Bali‟s acclaimed Living Lobby Art Exhibition series has reached new heights with the partnership of legendary batik designer and producer Iwan Tirta Private Collection. The exhibit marks the first of four quarterly exhibitions and workshops this year highlighting masterful works that represent the cornerstones of Indonesia art and culture.
From now until March 31, 2015, Iwan Tirta‟s Boketan collection will be showcased in the East Lobby Lounge of the resort. This latest concept features original works that can take up to six months to create and is available for sale to guests and visitors.
Further, Era Soekamto, creative director of Iwan Tirta Private Collection will conduct a two- day batik making workshop from March 19 to 22, 2015. Conrad Bali is offering a package for a minimum of three nights, with accommodation in the Deluxe Garden room starting at USD265++ per night and including the workshop, return airport transfers and breakfast. The workshop dates coincide with March 21st which marks the Balinese Hindu holy day of Nyepi, known as the Day of Silence on which no traffic is allowed; cars will be off the streets and people will have to stay at home.
Conrad Bali general manager Jean-Sébastien Kling said: “We feel deeply honoured to partner with the distinguished brand of Iwan Tirta Private Collection. This exhibition presents an opportunity for guests and local residents to experience the extraordinary indigenous art of Indonesia and discover the heritage and philosophies that underpin Indonesian culture, customs and beliefs.”
Nursjirwan Tirtaamidjaja, or Iwan Tirta as he is known, is considered the father of Indonesian batik, creating over 10,000 original hand drawn pieces of batik art before his passing in 2010. Tirta was born in Blora. He discovered motifs dated back from between the 6th and 18th centuries and brought new life to a batik originally worn and collected only by the elite members of the Indonesian royal court.
Above all, his work is rooted in spirituality, where control, etiquette and harmony conspire to establish the foundation of belief for the Javanese – where conflicts are avoided and a transcendental balance exists. Even the action of „canting‟ or drawing patterns with wax requires calmness, serenity and a meditative state of mind in order to create a perfect work.
Such is the level of artistic creativity involved in the batik that in October 2009 UNESCO designated Indonesian batik as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Iwan Tirta, who studied at the London School of Economics and Yale Law School, received a grant from The John D. Rockerfeller III Fund and was able to pursue his love of batik, creating the eponymous brand and bringing it to the attention of the global fashion market.
The future to develop the art however lays in the hands of Mahakarya Warisan Nusantara Group CEO Johannes Bima, who manages the Iwan Tirta Private Collection brand and was instrumental in the collaboration with Conrad Bali, which sees the expansion of the brand outside of Jakarta of the first time since the passing of the great man.
“We are very excited to be partnering with Conrad Bali as this represents the first step outside of Jakarta and the start of a new beginning for Iwan Tirta Private Collection as we embark on a journey to honour his legacy and create new relevance for the brand outside of Jakarta and indeed outside of Indonesia,” said Johannes Bima, CEO of Mahakarya Warisan Nusantara Group.
“We are delighted with the opportunity to be able to tell stories of our history and heritage through the intricate motifs and combinations exhibited at Boketan, and through Era‟s craft we are hopeful of creating a new respect and relevance for batik as a luxury garment around the world.”
The curtain went up on the three-month long exhibition last week at Conrad Bali with a glittering gala opening featuring presentations and a trunk show with models displaying Iwan Tirta Private Collection‟s latest collection, Boketan, especially curated for the Bali opening.