Silat Beksi: Betawi’s Pencak Silat

If Korea has taekwondo and Japan has karate, Indonesia has pencak silat. This martial art has been officially recognised by UNESCO as an Intangible Cultural World Heritage since 13 December 2019. As a culture that grew from the Nusantara Archipelago, the many versions and forms of pencak silat can also be found in neighbouring countries such

NOW! Jakarta

ISA Art Gallery Presents a Cross-Generational Exhibition of Bandung Artists

ISA Art Gallery presents the ‘Mother Tongue – Are You There?’ exhibition from 16 September – 17 October 2023, showcasing three generations of Bandung artists with diverse backgrounds and media. This exhibition highlights how Bandung artists blend their mother tongue with contemporary influences to create stunning artworks that unite tradition with modernity.  Bandung is renowned

Know Your Style: Interior Design 101

Designing and decorating your house can be a daunting task, especially when you have little knowledge on interior styles and concepts. Here we share background and the visual basics of today’s most popular styles, helping you to lock down a direction that suits you and your home. Art Deco  Everyone knows the exuberance of the

Mental Health Activist Hana Madness, An Art Success Story

I first met Hana Madness at the discussion “Art Has Saved My Life”, led by two Indonesian art activists at the Rumah Sanur Creative Hub, Bali, in June 2019. The discussion was one of the forums of Ayo Ketemu! (Let’s Meet!), an innovative entrepreneurial, creative program for Indonesians with mental and physical disabilities. Hana spoke of utilising

ARTJOG 2023 – Motif: Lamaran (Proposal)

ARTJOG 2023 is being held again at Jogja National Museum, Yogyakarta, from 30 June to 27 August 2023. This year, the highly-lauded annual exhibition takes the theme of Motif: Lamaran (Motif: Proposal) and involves an impressive 73 artists, consisting of 51 adult artists and 22 young artists. The theme “Motif: Proposal” was picked as the

Indonesian Fruits Through the Eyes of Early Explorers and Botanists

Indonesia is known for its vibrant markets which boast a rich variety of fruits, or ‘buah’. From luscious mangosteens to spiky durian, fruits play an important part in Indonesian cuisine. While Indonesians have cherished these delights for centuries, it was the first European explorers and botanists who introduced these exotic fruits to the rest of

Nujumata: String Art’s Silent Expressions

String art has evolved beyond a mere craft into a captivating art form, where colourful threads are meticulously arranged using mathematical, particularly geometric, calculations. This artistic technique has found its way into the world of art, creating captivating abstract images. The Silent & Loud exhibition by Nujumata showcases the artist’s exceptional skill and creativity in

Early Travels to the ‘Dutch East Indies’

Today’s travellers may feel envious of those who visited Bali back when it was ‘untouched’, but do not realise the difficulty of not only getting to the island but also the challenges once they arrived. Sake Santema, owner of antiques dealer Indies Gallery, explores early travels to Indonesia and Bali, complemented by prints and images

Spedagi Bamboo Bikes: Powering a Village Revolution

Melding technology and nature in a sustainable and aesthetic way, artist and designer Singgih Susilo Kartono has created Spedagi, bamboo bikes that rekindle the human-nature relationship. In turn, this unique product has also triggered the revitalisation of his home village in Central Java. Photos by Spedagi.  Humans have utilised bamboo for over 5,000 years. It’s

Soya C(o)u(l)ture: A Fashion Material from Tofu Wastewater

An all-female collective from Yogyakarta focuses on the exploration of art, science, and technology, The art collective is addressing environmental issues and empowering women to get a better grasp of science. Photos by XXLab. XXLab was formed in 2014 by five women: Irene Agrivina, Asa Rahmana, Atinna Rizqiana, Eka Jayani, and Ratna Djuwita. This was

Ayumu Gendouts: A Funky Twist on Indonesian Woven Crafts

The Indonesian handmade crafts industry is no stranger to woven bamboo bags. Due to their practicality and affordability, it is almost a guarantee that all Indonesians, especially women, own at least one of these types of bags. Because of this commonality, however, lots of artists and vendors have to explore their creativity in order to

Belantara Budaya Indonesia: A Cultural Education

Understanding that education goes beyond academia, the organisation Belantara Budaya Indonesia focuses on the continuation of Indonesian culture, providing free traditional dance and music classes across the generations. It was started ten years ago when Diah Kusumawardani set up Belantara Budaya Indonesia (BBI). In an era of widespread technological and digital adoption, Diah was worried

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