Artist cooperative Galerie Batik Jawa Indigo was founded by master textile artisan Mayasari Sekarlaranti. Born in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, Sekarlaranti watched her mother lead the city’s Yogyakarta Batik Society. From an early age, a deep love of Indonesian history and culture was instilled in her. In 2007, Sekarlaranti established Galerie Batik Jawa Indigo, Co., Ltd, in Yogyakarta, specifically for developing natural indigo batik, a style of textile that features rich, vivid areas of blue against carefully constructed, luxuriously soft backgrounds. The successful organization employs 250 regional artisans, the majority of whom are women.
Batik is the traditional cloth from the ancient Java Island in Indonesia, worn traditionally by both men and women. The production of batik cloth begins with a drawn pattern, which is then traced over with hot wax. Later, the cloth attains its rich color with locally sourced indigo dye. Once the fabric is prepared, it’s ready to be transformed into any number of items, from silky-soft shawls to decorative wall hangings, as well as smaller items like dolls, hand fans, and even necklaces. Traditionally made of cotton, today Sekarlaranti and her artisans also use silk, rayon, and various other natural fabrics.
In addition to being the recipient of numerous awards and accolades in her native Indonesia, Sekarlaranti is active in cultural organizations like Yayasan Batik Indonesia (the Indonesian Batik Foundation) and is a member of Mitra Seni Indonesia (the Indonesian Art Partnership), whose mission is to preserve ancient batik art-making styles for new generations of artisans.