Join Date: May 2006
Jaga, I sold this keris to the gentleman who had owned the collection that was auctioned last Sunday. In fact many of the S.E.Asian items in this collection had come from me.
I am not working from a blank canvas here, I know exactly what I'm looking at, I know all the craftsmen involved, Agus Irianto I knew for around 15 years, he was a friend of Empu Suparman, as his father was also. In the early 1990's he went to work for Tommy Suharto.
It would be a very bad idea to "swap out" the pendok. This keris is perfect and beautiful as is --- after you get rid of that garbage level selut. The pendok may be pasar quality, but it is very good pasar quality, you will not get one of equal quality in a pasar these days, to get anything better you will need to go to a bespoke one from a Solo craftsman, and for brass that will cost you around as much as this entire keris cost you. Additionally, this is good quality gold plate, to get quality as good as this now is impossible in Solo, you would need to get it plated in Sydney, and again, you'd be looking at a cost greater than the cost to you of this keris. You have something very nice and very good. Leave it alone and just look after what you have.
Jean, please see page 60 of the Surakarta Pakem. Balebang has two legitimate forms in the Surakarta Pakem, luk 7, luk 9.
There is something else too that we must not forget Jean:- dhapur, pamor, and just about everything else about the keris is not graven in stone, what one considers to be so is only correct in one specific dimension. The dimension I choose to use is Surakarta/Solo. I use this for a number of reasons, it is the senior branch of the House of Mataram, most of what I have learnt about keris has come from Solo, in a slip-sliding world of illogical, unfounded keris opinions, at least Surakarta/Solo stays consistently illogical, it does not change when the wind blows from a different direction.
Haryo Haryoguritno (Alm.) wrote a book, true, it is probably the best reference for Javanese keris that we have, but it is very, very far far from perfect. Never forget that Haryoguritno was a collector of information as well as keris, he collected from many people, but his world was the world of the collector, not the world of the dealer.