The History of Traditional Architecture Balinese

Bali is one province of Indonesia, wherein Bali famous of Unique Culture and variety of dances also performing arts, carving and traditional panting, weaving and jewellery. Also Traditional Balinese Architecture so intricate, balanced and has different colors in diversity of Indonesia Architecture.

Traditional Balinese Architecture is defined as the spatial structure of the container Balinese life that has evolved from generation to generation with all the rules handed down from ancient times, to the development of one form of the physical characteristics revealed in palm; Asta Kosala-Kosali, Asta Patali and others, to the adjustments by the undagi which is consistent with cues intended.

Below the list of important dates in the History of Balinese Architecture from book of Made Wijaya: "Balinese Architecture - Toward an Encyclopedia", as follow:

1,700,000 B.C  : "Java Man" first appears.
250,000 B.C     : HOMO ERECTUS tribes settle in Bali - Hand adzes used to skin animals and he
                            timber. Dwellngs in caves and trees (for protection).
40,000 B.C       : HOMO SAPIENS in Bali -- Primitive Dwellings.
20,000 B.C       : First cave paintings in Sulawesi and Irian.
12,000 B.C       : End last ice age; Bali no longer "Land" end from migrations from west.
4,000 B.C         : Metal Age culture in Northern Thailand.
3,000 B.C         : First migrations of Proto-malays to Bali.
1,000 B.C         : Megalithic Age throughot Indonesia. Trade with China and India already 
500 B.C            : Dong S' on bronze drums either manufactured in Bali and Java or traded
                            from China for spices. Dong S 'on era pavilion structures in Bali?
200 B.C            : Start of highly sophisticated Indianian (Hindu & Buddhist) Kingdom
                            in S.E.A Javanese hill-tribe influence n Bali.
400 A.D   : Srivijaya (Budha) Empire, centred in Palembang bu spreading as far as Thailand,
                   exerts strong influence on Balinese culture. Monks and teachers establish monasteries
                   and hermitages in Bali.   

450 A.D   : Date of earliest (discovered) scripted (Pallawa) antiquities, in Kutai Kalimantan and
                  Tarumanegara Kingdom of West Java.
670 A.D   : Chinese scholar Yi-tsing visits "Budhhist" Bali.
778 A.D   : Stupa, clay seals and "stone statues of a decidedly Indian character (Stutterheim)
                   used  in courtly culture in Bali. Goa Gajah and hermitages at Tampaksiring possibly
                   possibly built.
800 A.D   : Borobudur and Candi Prambanan built (Central Java).
900 A.D   : Pura Besakih and Pura Tirta Empul founded; start of Hindu-Javanization of Bali
                   during  the Mataram Empire. Political power in Java move East to Kediri/Daha.

Pura Besakih
989 A.D   : Start of Warmadewa Dinasty in Bali. Balinese Prnce, Udayana marries with Java
                   princess, Mahenrdatta. Rule from Pejeng; increased Javanization of courthly ritual
                   and Architecture. Pura Tegeh Koripan: funeral statues of Udayana and evil Queen.
                   EMPU KUTURAN and EMPU BARDAH arrive in Padang Bai from East Java;
                   re-organize island basic architecture philosophies. Summit at Samuan Tiga.
1049        : Anak Wungsu (son of Udayana) takes over the rule of Bali: reciprocal political 
                   cultural relations very close. Goa gajah annexed by royal baths.
1080        : Nine huge royal tombs at Gunug Kawi built. "ASTA KOSALA-KOSALI"  Balinese
                   building bible written n Palm.
1284        : Kertanegara, King of E.Javanese Empire of Singasari, rules of Bali from Java. Balinese
                   religion takes "Bhairawa" (manisfestation of Siwa as "The terrible") orientation.
                   Foundation of PURA DALEM. KEBO EDAN Temple at Pejeng bilt: Balinese version
                   SINGASARI magic temple.
1300        : Kebo Iwa, architect & minister of last Balinese ing, Beda Ulu, builds Yeh Puluh. King
                   as religious leader. (partly Hindu-ized), pays tribute to ancentor deities of village
                   temples - foundation of PURA PUSEH.

1343        : Beda Ulu depfeated by Gajah Mada, great general of Majapahit Empire; Sri Krsna
                  Kepakistan first vassal in Bali - progenitor of Balinese Ksatrya Dalem caste. Courtyard
                  architecture now flourishing.
1370        : Emperor's (DEWA AGUNG) court moves from Samprangan(Gianyar) to Gelgel
                  (Klungkung) - becomes great artistic centre. "Dukedoms" established throughout Bali.
1500        : Majapahit Empie in Java falls to Islam - thousands of Hindu priests, Princes, Artisans,
                  and solders flee to Bali. The Golden Age begins.
1550        : Batu Reggong inherits title of DEWA AGUNG : reigns in "undreamed of splendour
                  and autority". Dang Hyang Dwijendra (Niratha) arrives at Kerobokan, Kuta. from Java
                  and quickly sets to establishing his divine plan - architecture cultural, social, political
                  harnessing all the forces of the royal courts. SAD KAHYANGAN temples founded.
                  Balinese empire spreads to Lombok and Sumbawa.
1600        : Dwijendra achieves MOKSA at Uluwatu, leaving as his legacy a highly organized
                  classical architectural system.
1601        : First European influence of Balinese architecture: two members of de Houtman party
                  jump ship and set up house in Gelgel.
1650        : DEWA AGUNG's court moes to Klungkung - Kerta Gosa built. Start of era of Java-Bali
                  hostilities and intra-Bali courtly intrigues.
1700s      : Era of major dissemination of court-style architecture throughout Bali as princedoms
                  and Brahman Palaces "mushroom" across the land. Old Bali retreats to the hills.
1800s      : The century during which most of present-day villages, palaces and temples were
                  founded. The great palaces of Gianyar, Pemecutan (Denpasar), Karangasem, Lombok
                  (West/Balinese), Tabanan, Buleleng, Mengwi and Sukawati all rebuilt along classical
                  "Empire" lines; many with extravagant water gardens, follies & royal temple Villagers
                  follow suit, in their own way. Colonial Architecture influence seeps in, via Singaraja
                  to the East.
1846        : First Dutch Military expedition against Bali. Half a century later - after several horrific
                  PUPUTAN battles - they ruled the Island.
1920s      : Tourism begins. Road Singaraja-Denpasar completed; Nth. Bali (Modernist) influences
                  sweep in; the decline of classic Balinese architecture starts. Bali Hotel builts. King of
                  Karangasem introduce cement molds at his new palace and Tirta Gangga water garden.
1930 s     : KREASI BARU school of Architecture starts with Walter Spies modified-Wantilan
                  house in Ubud. New Dutch-built roads break up traditional (archtectural) boundaries.
1945        : Indonesian Independence; Bali follows suit in adopting Art Deco as style of emerging
                  Nationalism Soekarno realigns city centres according to ancient Javanese principles of
                  City Planning (Cosmogeny). 
1950s      : I.T.B ranch-house and social realism schools. Istana Tampaksiring built. Balinese
                  Modernist (Facade Architecture) begins with DPR chambers in Denpasar.
1963        : Hotel Bali Beach built (war reparation gift from Japanese) tradition-defying precedent. 
1970s      : Tanjung Sari & Bali Oberoi built: traditionalism makes a brief but glorious comeback!!!
                  Bali Hyatt built: Hongkong butalism (but handsome) with trend-setting Lobby.
                  Expatriate building boom starts.
1800s      : Jakarta mannerist (Balinese-ist) get all major commissions at Nusa Dua and elsewhere.
                  Cement pre-fab shrines and gates available at corner supermarket."Lucy in the sky with
                  diamonds" school now the norm not the exception. Alumunium cladding replaces the
                  palm trees. Dwijendra turn in grave.


The Balinese cosmos it is perhaps best to first define the Balinese universe, BWANA AGUNG, and work downwards. The universe (BWANA = World , AGUNG = Great) was born of the sound of creation:           
                                                            A U M
               A    ANG                DEWA BRAHMA    -  The Creator
               U    Ung                DEWA WISNU        -  The preserver
               M    Mang             DEWA CIWA          -  The destroyer / Resolver

This holy trinity of 'Super-Dieties' (in a patheon of hundreds) rule over the three divisions of the BHAWA AGUNG are TRI-LOKA, so the Human Body is divided into:
              BUR         (Head)    The realm of the Gods.
              BWAH      (Body)    The realm of the Humans.
              SWAH      (Feet)     The realm of the Cohonian influences (Demons & Ground Spirits).

The Village is Split into three area, as: 
             Temples                     as God Habitat    
              Village                       as Human Habitat        
             Cemetery                   as Spirit Habitat

The House divided into three area, as: 
             Shrine                         as God Area    
             House Courtyard       as Human Area
             Teba                            as Rubbish Area

TRI ANGGA / Room Hierarchy
Tri Angga is one of part from Tri Hita Karana, (Atma, Angga dan Khaya). Tri Angga is system of divide zone or Plan Area of Traditional Architecture Balinese.
            Utama, the highest position, the head.
            Madya, the middle position, body
            Nista, The below position, dirty, low, feet.

Traditional Dimension Bali
In designing a traditional Balinese buildings, all shapes and sizes orgaan scale based on the human body. Known for some of the names of traditional Balinese size dimensions are: Astha, Tapak, Tapak Ngandang, Musti, Depa, Nyari, A Guli and many more. A building design tradidsional Bali certainly must have noticed aspects of the environment or the culture.

Dimension of Traditional Bali Architecture
Every person and object within the stratum is rigidly placed accordin to the Hindu Lotus God as; North, South, East, West and Centre (WISNU, BRAHMA, ISWARA, MAHADEWA and CIWA). whose aspects and attributes determine the order of priorities: above and below, mountainswards and seawards, clockwise and anti-clockwise.

That's Protocol above gives rise to is a guidelines for Traditional Architecture Balinese, for examples;

Traditional Balinese architecture has the basic concepts that affect the values ​​of Interior. The basic concept is:
    * Concept of room hierarchy; Tri Loka atau Tri Angga
    * Concept of cosmological orientation; Nawa Sanga atau Sanga Mandala
    * Concept of cosmology balance; Manik Ring Cucupu
    * Concept of proportion and human scale.
    * Concept of court, Open Air.
    * Concept of honesty materials building
There are three axes that are used to guide the buildings planning in Bali, called of Sanga Mandala is composed of three axes, as such:
    * Cosmological Axes / Tri Loka; Bhur, Bhuwah dan Swah (hidrosfir, litosfir dan atmosfir)
    * Religion Axes: kangin (Sunrise) dan kauh (Sunset)
    * Natural Axes ; Kaja (Mountain) dan Kelod (Sea)

Traditional Bali House - Zoning

The Balinese House Plan in accordance with the concept of Tri Hita Karana. Orientation used to use the guidelines as mentioned above.
  • North-east corner is a sacred place, used as a place of worship, Pamerajan (as the family temple).
  • South-western corner is the lowest point in the plan-home values​​, is the entrance to the house.
At the entrance (angkul-angkul) there is a wall called aling-aling, which not only serves as barrier a view inside towards (to provide privacy), but also used as a repellent effects of evil / bad. This angkul-angkul have similar shape as the main gate in a modern building, as entrance connecting between the outside area and inside area within the building. In this section there Jineng building (granary) and paon (kitchen). There is a row of buildings - buildings pole sangah bale, bale sikepat / semanggen and Umah meten. Three buildings (bale tiang sangah, bale sikepat, bale sekenam) is an open building (without walls, with the basic building are form Bale frequently encountered in general).
In the middle of residential building traditional Balinese, there Natah (court garden / yard) which is the center of the house. Umah Meten for master bedroom, or a woman children room. Umah meten a building having four walls, in accordance with the functions that require higher security than other rooms (where essential goods and valuable). A typical residential community in Bali, which usually have a barrier fence around the buildings / spaces mentioned above.

In because customs are very strong at this Balinese architecture greatly affects their housing development. Balinese traditional house is still applied to the progress of time the era of modernization can not be grinding it away, "The Local Government to Implement the Law on the establishment of buildings on the island of Bali should apply their customary laws".