NUSADAILY.COM – JAKARTA – The combination of batik and seshweshwe cloth designed by eight students from the North Pretoria Vocational High School (Tshwane North TVET College) has become a prima donna in women’s fashion competitions in South Africa.
The competition entitled The Beauty of Batik and Seshweshwe: A Collaboration of Creativity in South African Bride Fashion Design is a pilot project for students organized by the Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria and Tshwane North TVET College.
“The nobility (nobility) of the students in this activity is not just competing. But the courage to combine the two cultures that have grown for centuries in Indonesia and South Africa, “said the Indonesian Ambassador to South Africa Salman Al Farisi in a speech released by the Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria, Monday.
Ambassador Salman added that the wedding dress, which is a combination of batik and seshweshwe, which is a traditional South African cloth, contains a message of harmony between the two nations that support and work together.
A series of competition processes
A series of competition processes have been held since September 2020 in commemoration of South African Heritage Day on September 24, 2020 and Batik Day in Indonesia which falls on October 2, 2020.
In a relatively short time, eight students from Tshwane North TVET College successfully completed their designs, namely a South African wedding dress. Which is a combination of batik material with seshweshwe cloth, which was displayed before the jury in two stages.
The first stage was held on 19 November 2020 by a South African jury and on 25 November 2020 by an Indonesian jury chaired by Umi Salman Al Farisi, wife of the Indonesian Ambassador to South Africa. The judging process takes place at the Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria.
Apart from demonstrating their designs, the students also presented their works based on their research on batik and Indonesian clothing in general.
The students’ designs were inspired by the diversity of Indonesian and South African cultures. As well as a combination of motifs and cultural philosophies of batik cloth.
Appearing as the first winner was Petronella Makgeta in a batik dress with a weaver motif. And as the second winner was Minicent Rasekgwalo who used Betawi batik.
The holding of a women’s clothing competition with a combination of batik and traditional seshweshwe fabrics is the first collaborative activity held by the Indonesian Embassy in Pretoria. With the target of the young South African generation who have great potential and curiosity in designing clothes.
So far, batik is only known as men’s clothing in South African society and has its own historical meaning for South African society.
Batik is popularly known by the people of South Africa as the Madiba Shirt which is the nickname of anti-apartheid (racial segregation) fighters. As well as former South African President Nelson Mandela, who always wears batik on every occasion. (ian)