Foreign Influences

 

On the eastern routes:

Because of Indonesia's location on the trade route between North and South as well as from West to East, the North coast of Java was often visited by foreign vessels.

 


Dutch entrepreneurs settled in Indonesia, wearing batik clothes.

It results in a lively exchange of a variety of goods including ceramics and silks from China and the cinde or silk with the patola motif from the west of India.The foreign art and culture were absorbed and fused with the existing javanese one, resulting in new works of art with their unique beauty. Merchants from all over the world came to the Indonesian archipelago: Chinese, Indians, Portuguese, Arabs, Dutch, and British.

Batik Indonesia Vessels of Arab Merchants
Painting of an ArabMerchants vessel.
The growing importance of the region as a centre of trade between China in the East and India and Arabia in the West saw the emergence of a great Southeast Asian empire, the Srivijaya.
Textiles were already among the major items of trade, like silk, brocade and damask brought from China, and cotton from India. Chinese traders had been settling on the islands long before the arrival of the European powers (British, Dutch, in particular). Each of them have influenced by their own taste the design of batik.

 

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