Keith Smith

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Keith became enthralled with the use of wax and the Indonesian batik copper printing blocks known as ‘tjaps’ at the World Batik Conference held at the Massachusetts College of Art in 2005. There he met Indonesian batik artists Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam from whom he subsequently took a tjap batik class and, in 2014, spent a month honing his technique in their studio in Yogyakarta, Indonesia.

“The cauldron of wax reminds me of the foul smelling concoctions I used to cook up in my past life as an organic chemist. Since then I have avidly collected tjaps, had some custom made in Indonesia, and have gradually improved my skills in the use of wax, tjaps anddye to create bold, colorful designs.” Keith uses the traditional techniques and tools ofIndonesian Batik to create contemporary and abstract effects with this old technique.Keith has studied design with Susan Louise Moyer and collaborates with his wife, fiber artist Merridee Smith, on works combining tjap batik and silk painting. His work may be seen at the Auburn Old Town Gallery.

Textiles: fiber, silk, cloth, wearable art, Indonesian Tjap Batik