H.J. Wolff – Indie 1928 Exhibition

H.J. Wolff was a Dutch illustrator who documented Indonesia (or Dutch Indies at that time, although I personally feel reluctant to use that name) in the late 19th century. In this exhibition, “Indie 1928”, Bentara Budaya Yogyakarta showed the book released by Haarlem-based company Droste Cacao, filled with illustrations of Indonesian culture done by Wolff. The images, around 150 water colour drawings and 50 sketches, were to accompany a writing by J.C. Lamster in the souvenir book.

The amazing thing about the images was that it covered almost the entire region of Indonesia. From Sumatra to Papua – all the ceremonies, traditional houses and costumes, cultural performances, and musical instruments – were all well ‘preserved’ by Wolff in his drawings. Basically it served like a documentary photography, before colour photography was common practice. It brilliantly showed the richness of Indonesian culture – it was a true representation of Indonesia.However, I had a slight suggestion for the organisers: (1) Use uncoated paper, preferably a bit brownish/cream colour. (2) Use matte glass. 😉



One response to “H.J. Wolff – Indie 1928 Exhibition

  1. Pingback: Yogyakarta Daytrip | oxalis·

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