Tenganan Dauh Tukad is the watered down version of Tenganan proper. People were friendly, but I was escorted to the ‘donation booth‘ after arriving. I gave 10,000rp, take it or shake it. Locals were sporting traditional clothing, because of the birth of the new temple.
Tenganan Dauh Tukad is a typical East Bali kampung, with a few extras. Dirt streets and yards, palm trees, no breeze and burning sunlight. Strolling down a lane I came to a sign which said ‘Dapet – Double / Single ikat weaving’. Entering up the narrow alley, I met Kadek Ardita, a Balinese artist, who’s wife is an ikat weaver. Kadek was a real nice guy, patient and relaxed. I knew he wanted me to buy something, but he also wanted to explain his art.
Kadek told me that only the women are allowed to weave ikat, the strips of cloth that are used for decorative purposes. In Tenganan, there is a special ikat called a Geringsing, double ikat, where the weft and the weave are dyed. Very complex and Kadek told me some Geringsings take 5 yers to make. Part of the reason for this, is the Balinesee Geringsing is considered to have special powers. ‘Gering’ means ‘sickness’ and ‘sing’ means ‘not. If you have a Geringsing, you will be protected against sickness, and these special cloths are used in ceremonies. Kadek told me that his wife can only work on the cloth on auspicious days, predicted by a special calendar, maybe only 1 day a month. at that rate, there are not many of these special clothes getting made.Kkadek went on to point out patterns that are only used in the Geringsing, one being a square pattern which represents Tenganan, the wall around it and the first outside.
Finally he told me, that only 3 colors can be used in a Geringsing, read, brown and black, to represent Brahma, Vishnu, and Shiva. A fullsize Geringsing from Tenganan might go for 12m rp, but you’ll have the pleasure of telling your dinner guests the history of it. There are only 3 places on Earth, that make double ikat, these are in Japan, India and Tenganan.
Tenganan Dauh Tukad has many small independent shops offering woven goods and classes.