Indigo and Ceriops Natural Dyes with Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam
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Indigo and Ceriops Natural Dyes with Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam

April 15, 2022 @ 10:00 am - 4:00 pm


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Learn to prepare and dye with two traditional Indonesian natural dyes: Indigo and Ceriops (mangrove tannin)

Please join us at the beautiful Fibershed Learning Center near Point Reyes Station, CA, for a 1-day workshop on dyeing with indigo and Ceriops (mangrove tannin), taught by artists Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam from Brahma Tirta Sari Studio in Yogyakarta. Javanese philosophy speaks of karti kerdating sukma, work created by the vibration of the soul. Their dedication to this principle, including an understanding that such work must be collaborative, has given birth to the form of batik that is the signature of their studio in Indonesia.

We will be learning to make and use an indigo vat with indigo paste from a farmer’s collective near Yogayakarta in Java, and a Ceriops vat (copper color) with dye material harvested from an FSC-certified, responsibly-managed concession in West Papua. The Ceriops extract is supplied by Threads of Life in Bali, and is now being offered by Botanical Colors in Seattle.

Nia and Ismoyo hope to promote these grassroot projects by using the dyes in their workshops, and look forward to sharing what they know of working with the dyes in this mutual growth process with the students. The focus in their workshops is to involve students in a creative journey that emphasizes becoming one with nature.

Enroll here:

Students may bring to dye: swatches of personal fabrics or small garments — must be of natural fibers only; otherwise fabric swatches will be provided.

Please bring any personal snacks, lunch and beverages. Lunch is not included.

Important note: Depending on conditions at the time of the workshop, masks may be required in indoor spaces for all participants, and we will maintain appropriate physical distance during the workshop. If conditions change and it becomes necessary to cancel because of the pandemic, your tuition and fees will be refunded.

This workshop will take place in the garage classroom, with doors open and plenty of ventilation. Restrooms are in the adjoining house. Lunch may be eaten on the deck or other outdoor areas.

Nia & Ismoyo will also be teaching a 2-day workshop on Batik and Creative Process on April 16-17:

FREE EVENT: An Evening on Batik and Javanese Culture with Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam
Join us for a talk on batik by Nia and Ismoyo, whose work explores the roots of Javanese traditional batik, continuing its essence in a contemporary spirit.
April 14th, 6:00 to 9:00 pm. The Learning Center will open at 6:00 pm for tours of the gardens and classrooms. The talk will begin at 7:00 pm.
More information here

Fibershed Scholarship Program
Fibershed is offering two scholarships to most workshops; one scholarship if it’s a small class. If you would not otherwise be able to attend, and would like to be considered as a scholarship recipient, please answer a few brief questions on this Google Form. Responses will be reviewed by Learning Center staff and kept strictly confidential.

About the instructors: Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam

Nia Fliam and Agus IsmoyoCrossing both visible and invisible boundaries—of nationality, ethnic background, the traditional, the contemporary, art-craft—Agus Ismoyo (Indonesian) and Nia Fliam (American) have been working collaboratively to produce contemporary textiles in their fine art batik studio, Brahma Tirta Sari in Yogyakarta, Indonesia since 1985.

Ismoyo’s ancestors were batik makers in the court city of Solo in Java. He was trained in industrial management at the Industrial Academy (AKPRIND) in Yogyakarta. Nia originally explored dye resist techniques from Africa and Asia in America. She completed her fine arts degree at Pratt Institute in New York City before coming to Indonesia in 1983 to study traditional batik.

“This collaborative art team is renowned for their intricate, nuanced and time-intensive contemporary fine art textiles. They have exhibited at many prestigious exhibitions including biennale and the triennial exhibitions in Indonesia and around the world and worked with world distinguished curators. Their work has been collected by museums throughout the world in public and private collections. Since 1994 they have explored and worked in collaboration with Australian Aboriginals, American First Nation, African artists from Mali and Nigeria and various Asian, American, European and Australian artists. They have received critical acclaim for their successful use of traditional textile techniques in exploring their own realm of creativity while pursuing an understanding of the value, role and meaning of tradition in the development of our world culture.” — Christine Cocca, Director Yogyakarta Open Studios, Yogyakarta Indonesia

batik by Agus Ismoyo and Nia Fliam

When Ismoyo and Nia founded their studio, they were committed to exploring the rich lessons of traditional Indonesian art both in terms of technique as well as symbolism. Beyond the creative process and symbols of these ancient techniques they have found an unending rich source of inspiration in an ever-expansive journey of artistic discovery.

Their studio, Brahma Tirta Sari—which means “creativity is the source of all knowledge”—produces fine art batik and was founded on the belief that there are many relevant traditions rooted in cultures throughout the world which are important resources in the creation of contemporary art. Brahma Tirta Sari is a division of the Culture House Babaran Segaragunung which Ismoyo, Nia, Pang Warman, Desmond Anabrang and Agung Harjuno founded to support their exploration of traditional cultures, in order to understand basic cultural principles found through local wisdom that act as a guide through an integral artistic process. The focus of the culture house activities is the understanding and teaching of batik’s intangible culture found through its ancient creative process.

Regarding their own work, Ismoyo and Nia explain:

“We seek to read the visual texts of traditional Javanese batiks which are expressions of the knowledge imbued in batik’s cultural heritage and to express it in a contemporary form. This richness is founded in a deep connection to nature and manifested in an artistic ecology which supports the growth and development of all forms of artistic creativity.”

IG: brahmatirtasari

The Brahma Tirta Sari batik studio explores the roots of Javanese traditional batik, continuing its essence in a contemporary spirit while expressing the traditional belief that the creative process can touch upon the sacred. (Photos courtesy of Threads of Life and Jerri Linn)


April 15, 2022
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
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Fibershed Learning Center
14000 Point Reyes - Petaluma Road
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956 United States
(415) 455-3070‬
View Venue Website


Fibershed Learning Center
View Organizer Website


Fibershed Learning Center
14000 Point Reyes - Petaluma Road
Point Reyes Station, CA 94956 United States
(415) 455-3070‬
View Venue Website