October 29, 2008

Cultural Centres in Jakarta

Last week, I went to see a piano recital by Patrick Zygmanowski which was held at the Erasmus huis in Jakarta. Besides his brilliant performance, I enjoyed it very much just because I haven't gone to any classical music concerts since living in Indonesia.

The fact is there are many performances & events in Jakarta (although of course not as many as in Europe). Here are a few websites I use to search for info on upcoming programmes :

- Taman Ismail Marzuki

- Gedung Kesenian Jakarta

- Bentara Budaya Jakarta
- Erasmus Huis

- Goethe-Institut

- Instituto Italiano di Cultura

- The Japan Foundation

- Institut Francais Indonesia

October 19, 2008

Stop Useless Consumption

Translation :
Do : If you have to go to work, this is a useful tip. Make a fake doctor’s note and take sick leave for 1-2 days.
Don’t : Don’t write down a serious illness, otherwise you might actually end up with it!

The above picture is part of an ad by Metro department store announcing its big sale. It ran in Kompas (one of Indonesia’s top national newspapers) on October 16th.

I was astonished when first reading it : The ad actually encouraged people to lie about being sick so that they can go shopping instead?!

The whole ad was a 5 half-page full color ad with the tagline : "Do what you have to do! Prepare and execute your best strategy for Metro’s Big Sale."

Each ad contained tips on how to “prepare & execute” the strategy. Some tips were actually decent such as “Memorize your closet. Survey the store first so that you’ll already know where to go and what to get”.........but then.......you have tips such as in the above picture which encourages Indonesians to prioritize shopping above all! I wonder whether the people who go actually need half of the things they buy....

Of course purchasing and consuming things in excess of what you need has been done since ages ago, however considering Indonesia’s situation (many low educated consumers, many people are not even getting the basic needs for living) and the age we live in (natural resources are depleting fast, global warming is on the toll), we should be more critical to our consumption patterns.

Although recycling has now become a major movement, I am more in favor of the view that the best way is to prevent the need of recycling in the first place. In other words : Reduce consumption, Consume wisely.

I am not going to get into this seriously since my blog is intended for leisure reading, but if you are interested to know more about consumerism issues, please have a look at these links :
- Anup Shah, Consumption and Consumerism, GlobalIssues.org, Last updated: Wednesday, September 03, 2008
- Why overcoming consumerism?

I thought I would try to tackle this issue by starting with myself. This is my pledge :

1. I recently just bought a new mobile phone &
I will not buy a new one for the next 4 years.

2. I know I currently have all the shoes I need for every kind of situation, therefore I will not buy any shoes for another 6 months.

3. I also have all the blazers I need : I will not buy a blazer for another 6 months.

4. I’m going to wake-up earlier so that I don’t need to take a cab to work just because I’m running late.

5. When buying small things, I will just put it in my bag. No need for a plastic bag.

Now that I’m willing to consume less, are you? If you are & you have a blog, please post your list up & we can exchange links. Maybe your list will inspire new ideas for me to add to mine!

Also, for anyone of you who has a facebook account, please join the Stop Useless Consumption Cause & invite your friends to join also. On this application is a link to the video “The Story of Stuff”. Although I’m not quite sure whether all the facts & figures presented are correct, but it is inspiring to watch.

Let’s make people aware of this issue! :)

October 16, 2008

Kite Museum (Museum Layang-layang Indonesia)

Address : Jl. H. Kamang 38, Pondok Labu, Jakarta Selatan
Telephone : +62 21 765 8075

This museum features all kinds of kites. Kites were
first popularized nearly 3000 years ago in China. However, the question of when the first kite was invented, has not been answered yet. A drawing on the cave walls of Muna in Sulawesi has stirred up the discussion that kites may have been flown long before that.

With an entrance fee of Rp.10.000,- (which is a bit higher than the normal entrance fee for museums in Jakarta), you will be assigned a guide who explains the various kites in the museum. Also included in the fee is a lesson on kite making & watching a short film on kite flying.

The museum also provides workshops for making batik & ceramics.

Traditionally, kites were made out of leaves

Traditional Kite from Bali

Traditional Kites from Sumatera

"Paired Kites" from Kalimantan (left is female, right is male)

Creation Kites (Modern)

Devices to help manoeuvre the creation kites

Look at how small these kites are! Smaller than the mobilephone chain

October 11, 2008

Music & Film Festivals this October

Finally, after a very hectic period at the office, I can have a social life again!
There are many things to do in Jakarta, but there are 2 special events this October that I am curious to check out :

1. Soulnation Festival

Soulnation presents performances by Indonesian and international artists in the R & B, Hip hop, Rap and Soul scene.

It will be held on 17-18 October 2008 and is the festival's first year. It is organized by the same people of the Java Jazz festival.

The main artists scheduled to perform are Akon & Ashanti ... hmm.....intrigued?

Check out its website for more info : http://www.soulnationfestival.com/

The website states that besides performances, there will also be fun attractions & activities such as fire dancers, body painting, temporary tattoo and fortune telling!

2. Europe On Screen

Europe On Screen is, as its name suggests, a film festival featuring European films. This festival has been held annually since 2003.

This year it will take place in nine cities across Indonesia. In Jakarta, the event will be held from 24-31 October 2008.

For detailed information on the films that will be shown this year, please go to the website : http://www.delidn.ec.europa.eu/film/
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