FROM YOGYAKARTA TO THE OUTBACK AND BEYOND:
Indonesian and Australian Batik Encounters
October 20 Nia Fliam
Nia Fliam and Agus Ismoyo opened their fine art studio, Brahma
Tirta Sari, in Yogyakarta in 1985. In 1988 they took their
batik skills on the road, visiting and teaching in Aboriginal
communities in Australia, working with groups who, while
deeply immersed in expressive art, had little background in batik.
These experiences were richly rewarding on both sides, so
much so that in 1995 Nia and Ismoyo returned to live among
various Aboriginal communities for three months in the Central
Desert of Australia. This led to collaborations in following
years with the Utopia batik community and later the Ernabella
Arts Studio. One outcome was a rich reservoir of fine art batiks
exhibited in galleries, museums and expositions across four
continents. A more personal result is the life-transforming experience
Nia and Ismoyo found when working together with
Aboriginal friends and artists. Join Nia for an artist’s talk on
her experiences in the Central Desert and beyond.
LINGUISTIC DETECTIVE WORK:
Tracing the Origins of Loanwords in Indonesian
October 27 Uri Tadmor
Have you ever wondered why Indonesian words like nama, sama,
and buku are similar to their English counterparts, name, same,
and book? Or why the Indonesian words for Monday, Tuesday,
Wednesday, and Thursday sound like the Arabic numbers two,
three, four, and five? Over its long history, spea-kers of Malay-
Indonesian have borrowed many words from the languages
of peoples and cultures with which they have come in contact.
Sometimes the origin of such loanwords is straightforward, but
in other cases the chain of borrowing is more complex and requires
painstaking linguistic research. By exploring loanwords,
we can learn much about Indonesia’s history and culture — including
things that would otherwise remain obscure.
Dr. Uri Tadmor, Director of the Indonesia Office of the Max
Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, in a richly illustrated
talk, will unlock some linguistic mysteries of loanwords
CONTEMPORARY INDONESIAN FOOD: Cooking for
Today’s Palates, combining Cultures and Cuisines
November 3 Petty Elliott
What do you get when you combine a “taste” of Manado and all
of Indonesia with extensive exposure to many European cuisines?
How can you share the love of your heritage and marry
it with your passion for cooking? In the case of Petty Elliott
who was born in Manado and raised in Jakarta, you have the
challenge of establishing a boutique catering business in the
heart of rural England. This added a new perspective to her
repertoire of recipes and eventually earned her a spot – and
a fourth place – in the BBC TV’s Master Chef Competition in
2001. These experiences led her to the realization that she had
a cooking talent. Let’s hear more about how this accomplished
gourmet evolved into a notable food columnist, culinary stylist,
cooking instructor and an international food reviewer.
From 2004 to 2008, Petty was a regular food columnist for Jakarta
Java Kini. She is now a contributor to NOW Jakarta and
holds regular cooking demonstrations at Ranch Market and in
her home. Her book Papaya Flower, Taste of Manado will come
out this year.
THE ROLE OF ISLAM IN INDONESIA:
Putting a Historical Context to the Present
November 10 Robin Bush
Drawing from her recently published book, Nahdlatul Ulama and
the Struggle for Power within Islam and Politics in Indonesia, Dr.
Robin Bush will discuss the role of the Nahdlatul Ulama (NU)
in the ongoing contestation over Islam in Indonesia. While the
‘struggle for the soul of Islam’ in Indonesia has been well scrutinized
in the post-9/11 context, it is little remarked that this
struggle began in fact long before Indonesia was even a state,
with the formation of NU in opposition to the rise of wahhabism
in the Arab world. During Indonesia’s transition to democracy,
NU developed a strong civil society discourse that included an
opposition to ‘Islamist’ politics – a stance deeply embedded in
the historical modernist–traditionalist conflict that has colored
intra-Islamic relations in Indonesia for the past century. In her
lecture Dr. Bush will describe the state of Islamic politics in Indonesia
with an emphasis on NU’s contribution to reform and
civil society in a democratic Indonesia. If you would like to know
more about the role of Islam in today’s Indonesia, this lecture will
provide valuable insights for the lay person and scholar alike.
Tuesdays at 7:30 p.m.
Erasmus Huis - Jl Rasuna Said, Kav. S-3 - Kuningan Selatan, Jakarta
An entrance donation of Rp 30,000 is requested.