Tengkawang Ampiek: A Batik Motif Symbolizing Borneo's Natural Wealth

Tengkawang Ampiek

Motif Name

Tengkawang Ampieak

Founded by Tribe

Dayak tribe

Associated Event

No specific association with an event


This plant is a symbol of fertility and goodness of the universe, which is the most important aspect for the Dayak tribe.

Common Origin State(s)

East Kalimantan Province, Indonesia



Batik, a traditional Indonesian art form, holds immense cultural and artistic significance. Among the diverse array of batik motifs, Tengkawang Ampiek stands out for its representation of Borneo's natural wealth and the symbolism it carries. In this article, we explore the origins, symbolism, and artistic elements of Tengkawang Ampiek, a batik motif deeply rooted in the richness of Borneo's ecosystem.


The Essence of Tengkawang Ampiek Motif

Tengkawang Ampiek is a batik motif that artistically portrays the Tengkawang tree (Shorea spp.), a native tree found predominantly in Borneo. The motif highlights the importance of this tree in the region's ecology and its traditional uses in the daily lives of the indigenous communities.


Design Elements and Imagery

The Tengkawang Ampiek motif is characterized by intricate patterns that replicate the foliage, flowers, and fruits of the Tengkawang tree. The design typically features large, bold leaves, representing the abundance and vitality of Borneo's rainforests. The flowers and fruits of the Tengkawang tree are intricately detailed, illustrating the botanical beauty of the region.


Symbolism and Cultural Representation

The Tengkawang Ampiek motif holds significant symbolism within the context of Borneo's culture. The Tengkawang tree is known for its versatile applications; its fruits produce Tengkawang oil, used in traditional medicine, cosmetics, and even as a source of sustenance. This symbolism signifies the interdependence of the community with the natural environment and emphasizes sustainable utilization of forest resources.

Moreover, the Tengkawang tree has cultural and spiritual importance in the Dayak communities of Borneo. It is often associated with wisdom, strength, and protection. The motif, therefore, embodies these values and represents a strong bond between the people and their environment.


Preservation and Prominence

Tengkawang Ampiek is not only an artistic expression but also a means to raise awareness about the importance of preserving Borneo's rainforests and its unique flora. The motif has gained popularity, both locally and internationally, being incorporated into various apparel, accessories, and home decor. Its prominence serves as a reminder of the ecological significance and traditional heritage of the Tengkawang tree and the forests it inhabits.



Tengkawang Ampiek is a batik motif that beautifully encapsulates the ecological richness and cultural significance of Borneo. Through intricate designs and symbolic representations, it portrays the deep-rooted relationship between the indigenous communities and their natural surroundings. May this motif continue to inspire appreciation for Borneo's biodiversity and foster a sustainable coexistence with nature for generations to come.

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