Alternate Names: peci; kopiah

Black velvet songkok (cap), owned by Lindsay Motherwell. These caps are widely worn in Indonesia, Brunei, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines and parts of Thailand for formal occasions. Lindsay imported cane from various Asian countries and travelled widely in the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s.

Sylvia Boyes (a South African-born orphan) and Lindsay Motherwell (a Melbourne-born drummer) met in Cape Town, South Africa in 1967 through their theatre connections. They fell in love but due to apartheid laws were forced to leave South Africa to marry in London. They subsequently relocated permanently to Melbourne in 1970.

Physical Description

Black velvet cap. It is round, with a flat top, but stored folded flat. The inside is covered with yellow stitching, and a yellow panel down the centre. The tag says "PECI Manis TOHA BANDUNG"


Statement of Historical Significance:
This collection provides a significant opportunity to represent political and personal freedom as a motivation for migrating to Australia within the international context of both apartheid in South Africa and the end of the White Australia policy in Australia. The personal narrative is well documented and the objects provide a material way to follow the lives of both Lindsay and Sylvia, both separately and where they coincide in South Africa and onwards together to Melbourne. While this is ultimately a love story, it plays out through the collection against the backdrop of apartheid South Africa, sixties London and an increasingly multicultural Australia.

More Information