Jadi Batek Gallery is a large batik and handicraft centre in Kuala Lumpur. It was established in 1976 and it has become a popular tourist attraction.
Batik items on sale here include lengths of batik dress material, ready-to-wear apparel such as dresses, blouses, t-shirts, scarves, pareos, kaftans, men’s shirts, children’s clothing as well as tablecloths, coasters, wall hangings and batik artworks.
Apart from clothing and batik by the metre, the artists at the gallery create original artworks.
Leaves and flowers are the most popular motifs for Malaysian batik designers, but fish and animal designs are also created for the tourist market.
Apart from batik, Jadi Batek Gallery also has a large selection of handicraft items, including pewter-ware, spa products, hand-made soaps from Langkawi, ornaments, herbal teas, durian coffee, mounted butterflies and insects, wood carvings from Borneo, masks from Indonesia, hand-made bags and baskets, jewellery and souvenirs.
Watch the artists at work
Jadi Batek has a small team of talented Malaysian batik artists. It is impressive to see the ease with which they create their beautiful works of art.
The gallery is helping to protect Malaysia’s heritage by providing opportunities for these artisans to earn a living from this age-old handicraft.
Types of batik
Two most common techniques are used for batik-making in Malaysia:
- Hand Drawn: The artist draws the outlines of the design directly onto the fabric using a pen-like device called a canting, which contains hot liquid wax.
Then the outlines are filled in with different coloured dyes using a brush.
- Block Printing: A wooden or copper stamp is dipped in molten wax and then stamped multiple times on the fabric to create a pattern.
The fabric is then dipped in dye, one or more times, depending on the number of colours, and the wax removed.
Create your own batik
Classes can be arranged for visitors to learn the basics and then try out their own skills and take home a piece of batik art as a memory of their trip. Book lessons in advance to avoid disappointment.
Corporate team building events and other special occasions can also be arranged.
This large gallery is a good place to shop for all kinds of Malaysian and Southeast Asian handicraft and souvenir products all under one roof.
What makes it special is that visitors can watch skilled batik artists at work and try their hand at making their own masterpieces as well.
Jadi Batek Gallery Sdn Bhd
30 Jalan Inai
Off Jalan Imbi
55100 Kuala Lumpur
Business hours: Daily from 9am to 5.30pm.
This article first appeared in Malaysia Traveller