Monday, November 27, 2006

bali architecture

The Balinese House

Taken from :
The House in Indonesia
Between Globalization and Localization
By Peter J.M. Nas
Published in Bijdragen voor de Taal-, Land- en Volkenkunde, vol 154, no 2, pp. 335-360, 1998.

The Balinese dwelling is likewise a form of open space architecture. The orientation of the house upstream towards the holy mountain Gunung Agung plays an important role. This direction is considered sacred, while its opposite is profane.

The territory of the house is divided, on the one hand, into mountain (head), land (body), and sea (legs), and, on the other hand, into the rising (head), zenith (body), and setting (legs) of the sun.

The combination of these two divisions results in nine cells of which the mountain/sunrise (head/head) combination is the most sacred and oriented towards the holy mountain. The sea/sunset (legs/legs) combination is the most profane.

All the cells are graded in this elaborate system and designated for particular use, such as the family temple, and accommodating the unmarried girls, parents, boys, granary, kitchen, and so on.

This means that the Balinese house is dominated by anthropomorphic and cosmic principles combined in gradation from sacred to profane (Nas 1995).


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