|BANTON BURIAL CLOTH
Dimensions: Length - 81 cm Width - 21 cm
Date: 14th-15th centuries
Provenance: Banton Island, Romblon
by: Maria Elena Paterno
Photo by: Neal Oshima
Philippine National Museum
The process is
simple, if a little tedious. First the threads are measured out and wound on a frame. They
are wrapped in a pattern with a strip of vine or waxed string, then dyed. When the thread
is dry, it is set up on a loom. The weaver begins to weave, and often only she sees the
pattern as it begins to emerge on her loom like secrets of the thread. Though warp ikat is sometimes thought to be
as old as weaving itself, we do not know when it was first practiced in the Philippines.
Any evidence we might have had was likely lost to the heat and humidity of the tropical
climate. The Banton cloths are the earliest known warp ikat textile in Southeast Asia,
found in a wooden coffin that also contained blue and white ceramics from the 14th to 15th
This article was taken from Philippine National Museum
website. For more articles on other Philippine artifacts and treasures visit their site.
Picture of the cloth was copied from their website for direct viewing purpose only.