Months passed in this way...alternately experimenting in this informal setting and learning the more traditional patterns at school until our works were completed and it was time to share this love with the world. The exhibition took place in Miki's home town of Surabaya (East Java) in what we would call an underprivileged neighborhood. This was were Miki had grown up and so he wanted to bring some art to an area which normally has no such privilege. The week long art show was designed to make art accessible in every sense of the word.
Along with affordable art works by over 50 artistes and performances every evening, he also organized a number of free workshops.
When Miki told his neighbors that he had been teaching Batik to foreigners who would be exhibiting, 20 women immediately signed up to learn how to Batik and made pillow cases which could eventually be sold. Although Batik is still practiced all over Java, Surabaya is an industrialized town which has largely forgotten its crafty past. The art show was in its second year and was a great success with coverage in the mass media and judging by the interest shown by all kinds of people it should continue to grow in the coming years...so if you find yourself in Surabaya and have already checked out the weekly shadow puppet plays ...you know where to go (Mahotsawa Salakasa Karya Jagir).
The Batik hanging behind the chess players was made by my guru and his Batik group "Gundurukum, and is 12 feet long!