site search by freefind
Sandra Niessen - Kaleidoscope

June 2010 - December 2011

As discussed elswhere on this website Legacy in cloth, Batak textiles of Indonesia – 568 full-colour pages about Batak textiles: design, techniques, history and catalogue raisonné – was launched on 15 May, 2009. To all appearances, after 30 years on the drawing board, the book was finally finished. However, for me as author and anthropologist, it had to be brought back to the villages in North Sumatra and given to the women who had helped me during the research phase. Only then would the book truly be done.

The distribution of Legacy in cloth in North Sumatra was dubbed Proyek Pulang Kampung/Back to the Villages Project and it took place in June 2010. It constituted the return of Batak textile heritage in book form. Forty books were distributed in the villages around Lake Toba and as far south as the Silindung Valley. Before, during and after my return with my book to North Sumatra I blogged about the project. MJA Nashir, writer, photographer and filmmaker from Java, accompanied me to document the journey visually.

Back to the Villages - Proyek Pulang Kampung

Proyek Pulang Kampung/Back to the Villages Project became a springboard for a raft of further projects: exhibitions, several lectures, a film project (Rangsa ni Tonun), Batak textile revival, a book (Berkelana dengan Sandra, Menyusuri Ulos Batak by MJA Nashir) and so much more.


To try and catch and weave together the threads of the adventure Nashir and I developed a digital kaleidoscope of our activities since June 2010 when it all began to the end of December 2011. Click the cover image to the left to download the Pdf file (1.7Mb).

Adobe Reader download

Get Adobe Reader