Shoulder or waist cloth for a man’s hinggi kombu - ROM2009_11159_1


Shoulder or waist cloth for a man’s hinggi kombu

Medium:Warp-ikat cotton tabby
Geography: East Sumba, Indonesia
Date: 1900
249 x 115 cm
Object number: 958.190.3
Not on view

The hinggi is made from two identical panels that are dyed to create the design in mirror image, both vertically and horizontally. Only women of the noble class were allowed to make this cloth style, and they alone knew the secrets for making red dye (kombu).

This hinggi contains images influenced by several sources: local deer; rampant lions inspired by European iconography; and floral designs from Indian double ikat patola cloths. In Sumba, the deer is associated with the hunting parties of local nobility. Common in hinggi, the rampant lion was probably inspired by Dutch heraldry. The lengthwise (warp) ikat-dyed pattern shows a schematic floral ground influenced by woven Indian textiles from Gujarat.

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