Welcome back to “Sumba Ikat Motifs: Flora Fauna – Part 3” where we would like to discuss more of Sumba Ikat’s various motifs and meanings behind every motif. Inspired by the people of East Sumba, which are communal in nature, such as collective deliberation, doing things together, solving common problems together is similar to the world of fauna such as cockatoos and parrots who are always in groups. For example, this fact is expressed in the art of “Kaka Makanguhuru, Pirihu Pauli”, which means cockatoos and parrots who are always in groups, and the cockatoo motif was born which symbolizes the life of a society in Sumba. Now, let’s read more about other motifs.
Sumba Ikat Motifs: Flora Fauna – Part 3
14. Mahang (Lion)
15. Kahuhu (Coastal Little Bird)
16. Habaku or Kumbulai Hawurung (Flying Lizard)
17. Karihu (Dedap Flower)
18. Readi (Duck)
19. Walla Watar (Cornflower)
21. Manu Marra (Peacock)
22. Rau Au (Bamboo Leaves)
23. Karambua (Buffalo)
24. Kawung (Monkey)
Elephants are not found in Sumba and are made into Patterns in Ikat Weaving Fabrics, showing evidence that in the past there had been trading interactions with the outside world who exported ivory to Sumba.
Until now certain kings or nobles in East Sumba still have ivory sticks and ivory bracelets are still part of the content of “mbola ngandi” (a container made of siwalan leaves containing cloth, sarong, ivory bracelet, muti salak or beads, knife, etc.) ) which the bride must bring from her parents’ house.
The elephant motif is from the original animal symbolizes strength.
The Lion pattern is the influence of the Renaissance style in Europe from the time of King Henry III in the mid-XVI century, entering Indonesia through Hindu culture.
The phrase about the Lion (Mahang) in the traditional Sumbanese literary language is not found, this proves that in East Sumba, Sumba generally does not have a lion.
Mahang Katiku Njara (Horse-Headed Lion)
The Horse-Headed Lion is a fantasy creature that is the epitome of power.
Mahang Katiku Tau (Human-Headed Lion)
Mahang Hawurung (Flying Lion)
The Mahang Hawurung (Flying Lion) motif is another fantasy creature that is a symbol of power and strength.
It is used as a pattern in the ikat weaving of East Sumba, indicating that the people of Sumba have always known their relationship with the outside world. This pattern or shape is imitated from the image of Dutch money in the Sumbanese literary language called Mahang Appa Uki.
Kahuhu is a kind of bird that lives on the coast, flying very fast and agile. This pattern symbolizes agility and agility in earning a living, acting, and behaving. In the traditional literary language of East Sumba “pa ka nyunyulu kahuhungu – kahuhu libu muru, pa karajaku karatangu na karata hingi wara” means together like seabirds or kahuhu who look for fish in the sea while running while jumping, seabirds looking for small fish or shrimp on the sandy beach shore.
Kahuhu is also a symbol of time which gives a sign that the rainy season is approaching.
It is a symbol of advice that humans need material preparation or capital for physical health in the world. “Na mataka, habaku” means sudden, unplanned arrival.
Karihu is taken from the word Wala Karihu or red dedap flower. Karihu is also the name of a kind of red snake that lives in water and is rarely seen because if it meets other animals, Karihu will always avoid it. The red color means the symbol for women/women. Karihu is a cross-sectional stylization of the female reproductive organs depicted in pairs. This pattern is always placed on the long middle line of the cloth, namely the line of honor, which is upheld, worshiped.
Karihu is a symbol of the motherly expression of the Divine. The Karihu motif which is shaped like the letter “X” also has a symbolic meaning of the beauty of a hard-working woman.
Readi or Duck symbol of a leader who provides an example and protection.
Walla Watar or Cornflower is the staple food of the Sumbanese people. Therefore, the cornflower that grows a lot during the rainy season in Sumba symbolizes prosperity.
Floral motifs are a symbol of human life that is in series and needs each other. It is also a symbol of beauty.
The Peacock or Manu Marra is a symbol of preserving the beauty of nature.
The Rau Au (Bamboo Leaf) motif is a symbol of natural dyes used for generations. This symbol can also be interpreted as selfless sincerity.
Buffalo or in Sumbanese, Karambua is a symbol of strength and a symbol of social status in society.
Kawung / Butti (Monkey) is a symbol of agility and cunning in managing life in nature.
Sumba Ikat is Indonesia’s priceless cultural heritage. From this cultural treasure, we are able to tell stories that happened a long time ago. Through ikat, humans are able to pass on cultural stories that can be remembered by their grandchildren. Don’t worry, next week we are going to continue our Sumba Ikat motif journey. Stay tuned for “Sumba Ikat Motifs: Human – Part 4”.
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