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Old 13th August 2019, 11:11 AM   #1
jagabuwana
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Default Keris luk 9 - inviting comments

I won this in an auction very recently. It wasn't my first pick but through my other preferences which I did not win, I learned that I had painfully expensive taste. I suppose this is a good sign for my keris journey, thanks to you lot who have corrupted me

Anyway, I quite liked this one and unlike my other picks it ended up falling within my comparatively modest budget. The other keris with luk that I have is Balinese and I was looking for a Javanese one to add to my small collection.

Among what I like about it is the atasan which has some nice chatoyancy going on and it appeared to me to be good work as far as the form and carving goes. The greneng in particular was quite pleasing to me. It feels quite heavy and solid in the hand.

Would love some more commentary on what you see, especially an ID on the dhapur and pamor.
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Old 13th August 2019, 10:09 PM   #2
A. G. Maisey
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Nice quality, recent, the blade is upper level Kemardikan.

The wrongko is bespoke, it was carved by the tukang wrongko Agus Irianto of Nusukan (Nusu'an) about 30 years ago.This is a very good wrongko, at that time in Solo there was nobody better than Agus, he was a master from a long line of m'ranggis.The wood used is not a Javanese wood, it is imported into Indonesia I do not know what it is.

The selut does not belong, get rid of it, the jejeran looks as if it is tayuman baru and was probably carved by Tejo of Boyolali, if not Tejo, then Wakidjo of Jagalan, you can test if it is tayuman baru by seeing if it sinks or floats in water --- just very quickly in & out, don't let it sit in the water, and dry thoroughly immediately you take it out. Tayuman baru will sink. A light hand rub with a few drops of furniture oil until dry then polish with a soft cloth. Work over the cecekan with a soft toothbrush. The mendak is good middle quality pasar, brass with a gold wash.

The pendok is not bespoke, it is upper level pasar, brass, gold plated and lacquer over the gold plate, do not ever try to clean this with any sort chemical, just a wipe over from time to time with a damp cloth, then soft cloth dry.

The gambar is best maintained with a furniture oil, I use O-Cedar or Sheraton, I would give it this oil weekly for a few weeks, then leave it for perhaps two weeks, and wax it with a good quality furniture wax, I use Antiquax.

The blade should be demounted from the hilt, and sprayed with WD40 daily for a week or so, just spray it, and let it drain off then spray again the following day. Then wash it with dishwash detergent under running warm water, use a soft toothbrush, dry thoroughly with a lint-free cloth and hairdryer, spray with WD40 again and let it dry, then paint it with fragrant keris oil (NOT coconut oil based) place into a plastic sleeve and store it out of direct light.

Dhapur is Balebang, pamor can be given as several, in Solo, in the trade, it would normally be given as ganggeng kanyut.

You did well with this keris Jaga.
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Old 14th August 2019, 08:01 AM   #3
Jean
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According to the book "Keris Jawa" or the EK, dapur Balebang includes 7 waves (or possibly 5 according to the EK). As this blade has 9 waves I would rather identify its dapur type as Sempana Robyong (greneng above the kembang kacang). Dapur Balebang also includes a twin sogokan unlike this blade.
Regards

Last edited by Jean : 14th August 2019 at 06:49 PM.
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Old 14th August 2019, 08:17 AM   #4
jagabuwana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean
According to the book "Keris Jawa" or the EK, dapur Balebang includes 7 waves (or possibly 5 according to the EK). As this blade has 9 waves I would rather identify its dapur type as Sempana Robyong (greneng above the kembang kacang). Dapur Balebang also icludes a twin sogokan unlike this blade.
Regards


Thank you, Jean. What is “the EK” that you refer to?
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Old 14th August 2019, 08:53 AM   #5
A. G. Maisey
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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.

Last edited by A. G. Maisey : 14th August 2019 at 09:04 AM.
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Old 14th August 2019, 02:32 PM   #6
Jean
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Quote:
Originally Posted by A. G. Maisey
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.


You are correct Alan but the dapur Balebang shown on page 60 of the book "Dhapur" is quite different from the blade in question IMO, especially it includes a sogokan, twin lambe gajah, and kruwingan. As this blade was recently made it is not too surprising that it does not follow the standard pakem.
Jaga, by "EK" I am referring to the Ensiklopedi Keris written by the late Bambang Harsrinuskmo.
Regards
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Old 14th August 2019, 08:02 AM   #7
jagabuwana
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Fascinated by your appraisal and very grateful for the tips, Alan - thank you! Happy to hear that I've picked up a good piece.

Yes the selut is probably what I'm least partial to in this whole arrangement. I feel that it's quite distracting. I'm inclined to remove it as you suggest. I'm also not mad about this pendok, though it seems to work. I may consider swapping it out.

I have a question which I hope isn't too broad. What is it about this wrongko that tells you it's made by Agus Irianto, or the jejeran by either Tejo or Wakidjo? Is this a case where you're so familiar with their work that you simply know it when you see it, or are there signatures or particularities in the end-product that you can attribute to them that we might be able to pick out?
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Old 14th August 2019, 09:54 AM   #8
Anthony G.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jagabuwana
I won this in an auction very recently. It wasn't my first pick but through my other preferences which I did not win, I learned that I had painfully expensive taste. I suppose this is a good sign for my keris journey, thanks to you lot who have corrupted me

Anyway, I quite liked this one and unlike my other picks it ended up falling within my comparatively modest budget. The other keris with luk that I have is Balinese and I was looking for a Javanese one to add to my small collection.

Among what I like about it is the atasan which has some nice chatoyancy going on and it appeared to me to be good work as far as the form and carving goes. The greneng in particular was quite pleasing to me. It feels quite heavy and solid in the hand.

Would love some more commentary on what you see, especially an ID on the dhapur and pamor.



What a beautiful keris. I am green with envy.
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