Thursday, June 25, 2009

President to Open the 31st Bali Art Festival

Indonesian President, Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono has been confirmed his presence to officially opens the 31st Bali Art Festival - locally known as PKB - at Bali Art Center, Denpasar, tomorrow night (Saturday, June 13th). The President will open the festival titled “Mulat Sarira” in a traditional way.

Confirmation on President's presence was announced by the secretary of the organizing committee, Made Santha, on Thursday (June 11th). “After an official speech the President will open the festival by ‘nepak kulkul'. Following official opening the President, VIP invitees, and general public will enjoy presetation of Mahabrata drama-dance titled Bima Siwaga”, Santha explained.

Different from the opening ceremony in the previous years when President or other high ranking officials in charge open the festival prior to cultural parede, this year President will open the festival at the festival venue, Bali Art Center.

The parade which is scheduled to take place on Saturday (June 13th), prior to official opening, will be officially launched by Bali Governor, also in a traditional ritual of twisting cakra in a stage located in front of Banjar Kayumanis Kaja. Parade will take a straight route along Jalan Surapati and Jalan Hayam Wuruk, and will finish at Banjar Bengkel.

Instead of only in front of the stage like the previous years, people can will enjoy performance of parade participants along the way. Line op has been set. First participant to start will be Siwa Nataraja dance by Indonesian Art Institute along with traditional drumb band Adi Merdangga. Behind them will be Jembrana, Karangasem, Buleleng, SOEI TV Japan, East Lampung, Denpasar, Tabanan, marching band of Udayana Univerity, Central Lombok, Badung, Bangli, West Kalimantan, East Java, Klungkung, and Gianyar.

Three stages have been erected in front of Banjar Kayumanis Kaja, Banjar Kelandis, and Banjar Kedaton.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Demand on Handicraft from Bali Increased

Global financial crisis did not seem to affect handicraft industry producing statues in Banyuwangi, East Java. Demand for their products from Bali remained stable so far, even tended to increase. Beyond Bali, similar situation also seen in various European markets.
At the beginning they were worried about impact of global financial crisis to their business, especially related to export of their products. “Fortunately our prediction was proven to be wrong. Demand on our products remain stable”, Atim Ismail, a handicraft producer in Banyuwangi told the press. Orders from Bali and European markets kept on flowing in. He even struggled in fasttracking his production to cover the demand.

Atim delivered 40 statues to Bali every month, of out which 50% were forwarded to Europe. Most popular were statue of Buddha and different sorts of godess. Almost all exported products were on those two forms. He was certain that most Europeans like Buddha in meditation pose.

Popular material was white stone brought in from Yogyakarta. Material supply was easy. Producer could get as much material delivered as they need at anytime. Easy to carve and popular as holly stone for its glossy white color, white stone was also free from moss.

Priced at between 2 to 8 million per piece depend on size and level of difficulty, a statue took about a week to complete. Atim employed 7 carvers at his studio. Interestingly Atim admitted that he was not making a lot of money out of his business. His main objective was to spread talent and wealth to the youth in his village, his very reason behind his relocation from Gianyar, Bali, to Kalipuro, Banyuwangi. “Obviously it is riskier to have the production in Banyuwangi. In addition to higher cost, transport risk is also quite high”, he explained.

Whilst he was enjoying 20-40 orders a month, he was unhappy with the fact that he could not sell his product directy to Europe. “We could not sell our product directly to Europe, we are dependant to? buying agents in Bali”, he said.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Wisata Dokar 2009

Cultural diversity is one of the main national asset and foundation of country development. Unfortunately along with rapid growth of development in various aspects has often swept the culture aside. Being one of traditional transportation mode, dokar is among many other thing in cultural diversity which has been abandoned most of activities.

Celebration of the 52nd anniversary of Udayana 9th Military Command has brought back the abandoned tradition by conducting Wisata Dokar 2009. Opened by the 9th Military Commander, Major General Hotmangaraja Panjaitan, 70 dokars participated the parade taking the route along Jalan Pantai Kuta, Jalan Melasti, Jalan Legian, Jalan Bunisari and back to jalan Pantai Kuta. The parade was followed by on-stage entertainment session.

The commander reminded that in heating up for development the country should never forgot the cultural diversity it has. More than one of many traditional transportation mode for centuries, dokar has been and is still a profession for many. This is the hard evidence that dokar is a real form of people economy. Therefore presence of sustainability of dokar is a communal responsibility. “We should never forget culture in developing our country, there are many of us relying their life on it. It is a form of people economy which we shall maintain and promote”, he said.
The commander furher reminded that people should do more than watching and enjoying entertaining cultural performances, but have to also appreciate the culture. “This event is conducted to promote togetherness between civilians and armed force to sustain dokar as a one of country's cultural heritage. Whetever profession we are in, we have to appreciate dokar driver as a profession and a business”, he said.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Stop Selling Arak

With the increasing death toll for consuming poisonous arak - Balinese traditional alcoholic brew - arak sellers started to worried in continuing their business. In fact, stopping arak trade - and other alcoholic beverage - publicly has been a must for long, as in the long run it will bring negative impact to behavior of young generation.

It the tourist spot of Kuta and Legian, operator of night clubs have stopped selling arak, despite the fact that arak and all variation of different mixes were quite popular to both local and foreign visitors. Before many discotheque and bars offered this type of brew for their clients. In most cases, arak was served in mix with other ingredients, and offered at a significantly cheaper price than imported beverages, the very reason of its popularity.

However with continuously increasing death toll operators of night clubs in Kuta and Legian preferred to avoid risk by providing arak. Manager of Engine Room discotheque in Legian, Putu Meste, said that he has immediately decided to stop purchasing supply and and provising arak. Termination was intended to anticipate unexpected impack of more victims of arak. “We have stopped since four months ago. And it is not only us, other operators around Legian area have taken similar policy”, he said.

Definitely Engine Room continued to provide other alcoholic beverages especially the ones imported through legal channel. “Quality of imported beverages instead of running into trouble”, he added.

Manager of Deja'Vu, Irmawan Pujiyanto Putra said that his night club only sell legalized imported and local alcoholic beverages such as vodka and gin. He said that Deja'Vu has no longer provided arak. Whilst he admitted that that there were some occassional request for arak, but he could only responded by telling that arak was no longer available. “We do not sell arak any longer. Not many visitors order, and its quality is on question as well. We are worried that mixed arak will endanger visitors' life”, he said.

World Travel Blog launched

Hi All!

I`ve just started my new blog about world travelling. I will post pics, videos and articles from all around the world!