Motif Seni Hias Koleksi Cutam Di Jabatan Muzium Malaysia

  • Raja Suriaty Raja Ahmed Mrs.
  • Sabzali Musa Kahn
  • Hayati Mohamad Zawawi


This writing is a report on the study of niello’s collection motif that has been carried out in five locations, namely the National Museum, the Perak Museum, the Malay World Ethnology Museum, the National Textile Museum and the repository of the Collection Management Division, Department of Museums Malaysia. Niello is a decorative art technique applied to gold, silver and copper carpentry. Niello is a black alloy that is used to fill in carved decorations with the aim of giving attractiveness and a contrasting color to silver items. The community recognizes the niello technique or translated into English as niello or nielloware based on the blue and dark blue colors that result on the surface of gold, silver and copper carpentry carvings. This study of motifs of decorative art was carried out in order to identify the motifs found in niello’s collection. As a result, a total of 127 of niello’s collections in the five locations have been identified and categorized into 18 types of material culture. From the 18 types of cultural equipment, the researcher has made observations and classified the samples into four motif themes, namely plant motifs, animal motifs, Hindu-Buddhist figure motifs and Arabic inscription motifs. The researcher's observations of each sample are made with references from book sources, field studies, journals and also interviews with the respondents. The results of the study show that motifs with Hindu-Buddhist influence such as mythical animal motifs (garuda, kinnari and kinnara, kochasri and others), 12 zodiac animal motifs, lotus-based plant motifs (kranok, dao klip bua and lai dok bua , lai bai bua, dok lai and kan bai bua), jasmine flowers and cotton flowers as well as 3 Hindu Buddhist religious figures (Rama, Hanuman and the deity Theppanom) were found in the collection of cutam at the five locations of the study. Also found is three niello pending with Arabic number inscription motif.


A.A Moss, Niello, Studies in ConservationVol.1, No.2 (Jun 1953), Halaman 49-62
A.A Choo. 1984. Silver: A Guide to The Collections National Museums Singapore. National Museum Stamford Rd.
Ali, Z. (2006). Thoughts on the Aesthetics of Malay Artifacts. Wacana Seni (Journal of Arts Discourse), 5, 1-16.
Buchler, W. (1953). Arts and Crafts in Siam. Folklore Studies, 12, 124-129
Carpenter, B. W. (2012). Ethnic Jewellery from Indonesia: Continuity and Evolution. Editions Didier Millet.
Faraj, A. (2016). A New Incantation Bowl with Arabic Inscription. Quaderni Di Studi Arabi, 11, 207–220.
Fleming, E. M. (1974). Artifact study: A proposed model. Winterthur Portfolio, 9, 153-173.
Gokhale, B. G. (1974). Animal Symbolism in Early Buddhist Literature and Art. East and West, 24(1/2), 111–120.
Grassby, R. (2005). Material Culture and Cultural History. The Journal of Interdisciplinary History, 35(4), 591–603.
Hussin, H., Mansor, S. A., Omar, R., Ismail, H., & Hassan, A. (2009). Seni, Seni Hias, Seni Reka, Reka Bentuk dan Estetika daripada Persepsi Umum dan Orang Melayu. Jurnal Pengajian Melayu (JOMAS), 20(1), 82-98.
Johari, N. I. M., Said, T. S., & Ramli, H. (2020). Kesinambungan Warisan Kesenian Langkasuka di Tanah Melayu. International Journal of the Malay World and Civilisation, 8(2), 2020.
Mubin Sheppard. (1972). Taman Indera: Malay Decoratives Art and Pastimes. Oxford University Press.
Paul Bromberg (2019). Thai Silver and Nielloware. River Books, Bangkok, 2019. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society. 29. 1-2. 10.1017/S1356186319000245.
Prown, J. D. (1982). Mind in Matter: An Introduction to Material Culture Theory and Method. Winterthur Portfolio, 17(1), 1–19.
Scarpaci, J. L. (2016). Material Culture and the Meaning of Objects. Material Culture, 48(1), 1–9.
Syed Ahmad Jamal. (1979). Rupa dan Jiwa. Kuala Lumpur: Universiti Malaya.
Sylvia Fraser-Lu. (1990). Silverware of South-East Asia. Oxford University Press.
Taylor, P. Y. (1994). Beasts, birds, and blossoms in Thai art. Oxford University Press, USA.
The Dictionary of the Royal Institute Thailand (1950). Royal Institute of Thailand.
Wanviratikul, S. (2014). The Passage of Lotus Ornament from Egyptian to Thai, A study of Origin, Metamorphosis, and Influence on Traditional Thai Decorative Ornament. Bulletin of Japanese Society for the Science of Design, 61(1), 1_101-1_110.
William Shaw (1971). Invulnerability. Federation Museum Journal. Vo.16. Jabatan Muzium Malaysia.
Winstedt R.O. (1909). Malay Industries, Part 1. Arts and Crafts. F.M.S Government Press.
Zakaria Ali. (1989). Seni dan Seniman: Esei-esei Seni Halus. Kuala Lumpur. Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka.
How to Cite
RAJA AHMED, Raja Suriaty; MUSA KAHN, Sabzali; MOHAMAD ZAWAWI, Hayati. Motif Seni Hias Koleksi Cutam Di Jabatan Muzium Malaysia. Asian Journal of Arts, Culture and Tourism, [S.l.], v. 4, n. 4, p. 46-61, dec. 2022. ISSN 2710-5830. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 21 apr. 2024.