Haarlem, H. Kleinmann & Co.; Utrecht, A. Oosthoek, 1899-1914. Two volumes in two (text, atlas). Large 4to (33.5 x 25.8 cm). Double title pages (in German and Dutch), 534, xxix pp.; several text illustrations (1914 text volume); ix pp.; 100 plates (many double-sized, and/or in colour), one very large, double folded map (in red and black) of Java and Madura (1899 atlas volume). Uniform batik cloth. Patterned endpapers.
The first comprehensive work on batik art, a beautiful work, aptly bound in batik cloth. Rarely found complete - if at all. There is a 15-year gap between publication of the atlas (with rather early colour photography) and the accompanying text. The work deals with all aspects of batik design, production, and application, comprising many fine photographs of batik manufacturing, including batik presses, batik dresses and other cloths, and a variety of stunning designs and patterns, partly printed in colour. Batik, which originates from the island of Java, is “a technique of wax-resist dyeing applied to the whole cloth. This technique originated from the island of Java, Indonesia. Batik is made either by drawing dots and lines of the resist with a spouted tool called a canting, or by printing the resist with a copper stamp called a cap. The applied wax resists dyes and therefore allows the artisan to colour selectively by soaking the cloth in one colour, removing the wax with boiling water, and repeating if multiple colours are desired” (Wikipedia). The first author, Gerret Pieter Rouffaer (1860-1928) was a versatile scientific researcher and bibliographer. With no academic background, he considered himself a "free worker". He has published on painting, applied arts, archaeology, history, ethnology, geography and cartography of the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia), seen from an indigenous, rather than a colonial point of view (see Dutch Wikipedia). The second author, Hendrik Herman Juynboll (1867-1945) was a Dutch linguist and scholar, specialized in old Javanese languages, art, and culture. Texts in two columns, viz., German (translated by J. C. E. Schmeltz) and Dutch. Includes a bibliography and several indexes. Some light age-wear, mainly to the spines; occasional light, mostly marginal foxing (the atlas title more spotted), otherwise a very good, clean and unmarked copy. We found only one auction record of a complete copy. OCLC reports fewer than ten copies in libraries worldwide. Siegelaub, Bibliographica Textilia Historiae, p. 213.