Quirky, enigmatic and uniquely beautiful, the art and furnishings of Central and East Java’s villages and palaces are little known to the art historians, museum curators and collectors of the world. Armed with all the charm and characteristics of folk art—bright, bold colours; naïve forms and compositions; flattened perspective; anonymous origins; functionality; humour and social commentary—it is the product of a complex and ancient culture renowned for its ability to pick and choose from outside influences without impairing the integrity of the original.
Javanese Antique Furniture and Folk Artcelebrates this delightful art form with compelling, colourful photography, while insights from experts reveal the history and fascinating culture embodied in one of the world’s most impressive collections of Javanese art.
Bruce W. Carpenter is an expert, scholar and writer who has authored and co-authored over 18 books and scores of essays and articles on Indonesian art, culture and history. He began with Willem G. Hofker, Painter of Bali (1993), the first major illustrated book on an expatriate artist in Bali, followed by the critically acclaimed, W.O.J Nieuwenkamp, First European Artist in Bali (1997). Since co-authoring Batak Sculpture (2007), Carpenter has focused primarily on the extraordinary traditional and tribal arts of Indonesia. His most recent work, Javanese Antique Furniture and Folk Art (2009), was a pioneering book on this little known subject.
David B. Smith bought, refinished and sold his first piece of antique furniture, a Pennsylvania dry sink, at age 11, and so began a life long passion for antiques. Over the past 20 years, he has amassed one of the most impressive collections of Javanese antique furniture and folk art in the world. He divides his time between his home and workshop in Blitar, East Java, and a home on Vashon Island near his home furnishings store, David Smith & Co. in Seattle, Washington.
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