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Arts and crafts

The arts and crafts collection of the Feldman Family Museum contains more than 80 diverse items from many countries of the East, including Turkey, India, Tibet, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia. The chronological limits are from the late 17th to the early 20th century, but most of the items date back to the 18th – 19th centuries. They represent various arts and crafts, mainly artistic metalworking, bone, wood and stone carving. A special place in the collection is occupied by the hilts of the krises are a specific edged weapon of the Malay world. The geographic area of kris covers most of the Malay Archipelago and some regions in the mainland of Southeast Asia, but it is most closely associated with the culture of Indonesia. The role of kris in the traditional culture of the Malay peoples is so significant that it was included by UNESCO into the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2005. The kris hilts are striking in the wide range of shapes, variety of materials used, and extremely complex symbolism. Each hilt, designed as an abstract, anthropomorphic or zoomorphic figure, is a vivid example of ethnic artistic tradition, which carries a sacred meaning and has magical significance. The kris hilts have long been collectors' items among lovers of oriental art, perhaps more so than the kris itself as a weapon.