From a discussion about creating a unique and impactful activity in Jakarta, college mate trio Benson Putra, Jazz Pratama and Nadia Daniella conceptualised Bartega Paint & Sip, an artistic platform that combines the love of art and appreciation of good drinks.
Regarding the movement, Benson explained that “painting is an acceptable medium for people to socialise and potentially explore their new hobby. To make it more fun, wine or beer is also served as an optional addition to the experience. Our goal is to not only inspire people to explore new and fun activity, but also to make them better individuals and give them a chance to positively contribute to social movements.”
With an entirely different approach to painting, Bartega Paint & Sip invites everyone to join up; no prior painting or drinking experience required. “We try our best to make each event less of a class but more like a party. We don’t focus on technical details and theories, but more on how we could introduce painting as a way for our participants to mingle, socialise and relax,” Benson concluded.
Would you mind telling us a little bit about your Paint & Sip movement?
Three people started Bartega: myself, Jazz Pratama and Nadia Daniella. Each of us handles important roles in the company. I handle art, business development and partnerships, Jazz looks after marketing, customer relations and social media, while Nadia handles finance, accounting and operations.
Three of us were college friends in the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, and one day, on February 2017, we had a talk over dinner. We were discussing about how we could create a unique and impactful activity that people in Jakarta could enjoy. And that’s why we started Bartega (more details on #2)
Bartega cater to both public and private events. Our public events are held in various places around Jakarta, typically restaurants, coffee shops, coworking spaces, or even in a house. For most events, we conduct guided acrylic painting session, and our attendees can bring their artwork home with them after the event.
We try as much as we can to make each event as less of a class, but more like a party. Event though we provide guidance and directions on how to reproduce the artwork, we encourage our attendants to be creative and to add their personal touch to the painting. In a sense, painting is used as a medium for people to socialize and potentially explore their new hobby. To make it more fun, wine or beer is also served as an optional addition to the experience.
To serve groups or communities that are looking for a custom-tailored events, we also host private parties that are customized up to the client’s preference. In the past, we have provided fun painting activities for birthday parties, bridal shower, product launch, and team building activities. We have organized events for Louis Vuitton, Disney, Unilever, IKEA, Chanel, Chopard, Djarum, P&G, Bain &Co., DBS Bank, and many more.
In addition to the programs mentioned above, we have also previously worked with non-profit organizations, including United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Jakarta Animal Aid Network (JAAN), Centre for Orangutan Protection (COP), House of Grace, and Sahabat Anak Foundation, where we conduct public events, through which the proceeds were donated to the cause of the organizations.
For example, Bartega collaborated with UNHCR to commemorate World Refugee Day 2019 to increase public awareness and support the life of refugees in Jakarta by hosting a talk show that shared about their back-story and emphasized on the importance of inclusion in addressing refugee issues. A three-hour painting session followed the talk show, giving refugees who came to our event a chance to paint a “Sunrise Beach” that acts as a metaphorical symbol for their new and uprising hope.
So through both of our public and private events, our purpose is to not only inspire people to explore new fun activity in town, but also to make them as better individuals and give them a chance to positively contribute for social movements.
What inspired you to spark this movement in Jakarta?
It was during a casual discussion over dinner when the idea of establishing a paint and sip company came out. The three of us felt that the current lifestyle in Jakarta needed an additional spark that would encourage people to explore new range of activities that would eventually inspire them to do what they like –hopefully as a career. From there, we were passionate to find the solution.
We took no delay, and kick started the project 3 days after we committed on the idea. The first three events were catered to our first circle of friends: gathering their feedbacks, developing our MVP (Minimum Viable Product), and building our website.
From the feedbacks, we realized that our audiences were not obsessed with Bartega as a channel for them to learn how to paint, but more as a way to mingle with their loved ones, to meet new people, to fill in their weekend afternoon, and to explore for new activities and inspiration.
By setting our event’s being a source of inspiration as the company’s north star, we have been developing our service to become more than just a painting event. Every month we invite experts from different industry to our “SeminART” event. They are invited to share their insights and ideas with the intention to give a new story that will further enlighten our participants during the painting session.
Please describe your typical Paint & Sip session.
As mentioned above, we try as much as we can to make each event as less of a class, but more like a party. The way we carry out the class is totally different from a conventional and educative painting class; we don’t focus on technical details and theories about painting, but more on how we could introduce painting as a way for our participants to mingle, socialize, and relax…
The full upcoming schedule could be found on our website, which also acts as a portal for everyone to register to any of our events. During the registration process, they could choose the “painting only” package or “paint and sip” package –we would distribute wristbands during the event to ones who buy “paint and sip” tickets to distinguish who drinks from those who don’t (with ID check as well, of course!)
Our events typically began with our instructors briefing the class about what’s going to happen during the 3-hour event, encouraging everyone to unleash their inner artist and add a personal touch to the painting. The intention is to make them stay calm in case their painting turns out to be different, understanding that one’s painting is uniquely shaped by the painter’s personality, mood, and creative sense.
After the briefing, our instructor will demonstrate the painting around the class in a step-by-step process, making sure the 90% of our attendees who have no experience in painting could still go back with their new masterpiece. In addition to a teacher, we also have an event runner in each event who helps pouring the wine, refilling the paint, and assisting our participants throughout the painting session.
The finished painting could then be brought back as an artistic memento that proofs the participants that they could achieve beyond what they thought was not possible.
How can our readers interested in joining your sessions sign up?
The current issue highlights contemporary art. What’s your take on Jakarta’s current scene of contemporary art?
In recent years, I am seeing an incremental awareness about contemporary art among the young generations. This may have resulted not only because of the rise in number of exhibitions, seminars, and events that revolve around contemporary art in Indonesia, but also thanks to social media that constantly feed us with interesting visual and knowledge in art.
The positive shift in public’s reception towards sensitive issues may have also encouraged and opened up the trend of contemporary art in mainstream market as well. And I believe this has helped the public a lot in receiving Bartega as a new social lifestyle that invites them to experience the joy of painting as the performer behind the canvas.
Any message to our readers?
We have been getting remarks from people, telling us that we are super lucky being able to do what we like for a living. Describing what we do now sounds like an easy task to everyone, but trust me, it started out as a tough road for us.
Starting up with Bartega was not an easy and convenient option for me. As a human being, we tend to keep comparing our life with others, and for people my age, it’s mostly about the security of income and what job title we would proudly put up on our LinkedIn profile.
With the presence of promising startups and multinational companies that could be a safe option for me to work at, it’s quite weird to tell my parents and friends that I have opted to start my own painting business, understanding that 2 years ago we were the first one to operate such business in Jakarta, and describing what we were planning to do to anyone sounded very skeptical.
But throughout our 2-year journey, we strongly believe that being creative has been our secret sauce. In whatever field or industry you work at, if you are able to pour in as much creativity and originality as possible, you will stand out. Our solution-driven culture and resiliency in shaping and developing our service have honored us with the chance to work with 5.000+ people and 86 world-class brands in telling their products’ stories to the right audience in engaging ways.
So to sum up my message: making a living from doing what you like is not a myth. If you are constantly putting on the hard work to turn your plans into real actions, positive results will follow.
Utilize the presence of social media to amplify your actions and messages to the world. Understand how to use them, and it will become your best friend. But remember to always be creative and original. Do not simply copy others’ works and hope to make it work out for you….