Blog Post C – Design & Culture – Indonesia

Design & Culture – Indonesia

Indonesian design focuses on traditional aspects inspired from their cultural background however, many Indonesian designers have shifted the focus onto combining both contemporary elements with traditional patterns and symbols. Indonesian designers seem to draw a lot of their inspirations from their cultural background that influence their design intention and outcome.

Indonesian design draws heavily on their cultural background, focusing on detailed designs that is visually rich and vivid. Carolyne, and Indonesian graphic designer who grew up in Papua, East Indonesia in a small town explained how “design” as an industry was not well known or really understood of. Despite that however, Carolyne have developed a sentiment and integrated the “papua pattern”, traditionally geometric and symmetrical in her design. Another aspects that is integral to Carolyne’s design inspiration is nature, specifically in “trees and flowers”.

Double Flower Angle, Carolyne Natasha 2014
Double Flower Angle, Carolyne Natasha 2014

On the other hand, Andes, designer from Indonesia came from a small village in Titang, in Klaten City, Central Java, grew up in a small village surrounded by “rice fields, rivers and mountains” which inspired him towards sustainable design. His childhood was filled with simple toys such as “toy cars with cigarettes packaging” and kuda pelepah pisang, “toy guns made with banana leaves” and watched “wayang kulit” (shadow puppet shows), influenced his design philosophies of using sustainable or reusable materials in his design.

Kurusetra: G-W, Andes Vergia 2014
Kurusetra: G-W, Andes Vergia 2014

The design scene in Indonesia is not the most prominent in the world, but is definitely growing. However, there is a large contrast in perspective of the current design industry, with Carolyne voicing that “many people in Indonesia are not aware with design” and that on occasion, clients “ paid me very low and i really disappointed.”. It’s interesting to note that “There are a lot of Indonesian designer that have a good reputation internationally for what they have done in design scene”, but not locally, despite having “as good as a graphic design studio’s work”. Both Caroylne and Andes do agree upon the fact that the Indonesian design scene is growing, especially internationally with designers such as Singgih Kartono who designed the Magno radio.

Wooden Radio by Magno
Wooden Radio by Magno

Indonesian designers’s design principal seem to infuse with their cultural believes and practices, evident in both the incorporation of the “papua pattern” and Andes’s sustainability principals. As said by Andes, “As a young people we should try to conserve our culture.. Culture is not just national treasure, culture is identity.. We never want our culture abandoned and disappear, then we just realised and regret..”

Vergia, A 2014, Kurusetra: G-W’, Behance, viewed on 29 April, 2015, <>

Natsha, C 2014, Double Flowerangle, Behance, viewed on 29 April 2015, <>

Magno Design 2014, Process, Magno Design, viewed on 29 April 2015, <;

Blog Post C – Punk Rock & Indonesia

Punk Rock & Indonesia; PUNK NOT DEAD

Indonesia, often associated as a popular holiday destination with beautiful destinations and polite citizens have a darker history behind all the partying and paradise spotlight. During the late 90s, a major event shifted the social, cultural and political tides in Indonesia with the downfall of President Suharto in 1998 (SMH 2008). After 31 years of strict, conservative but more importantly, repressive regime was finally overturn, which resulted in a switch into a democratic regime that was followed up with social progression and freedom of speech (ABC 2014).

This very well may not have happened without the loud protest of the punks in Indonesia. With one of the biggest punk rock scenes in the world, the punk movement can be perceived  as a gateway to countercultural ideas and radical political views that question traditional thinking (VICE 2014). The punks believe that they “have power and autonomy” (ABC 2014 para. 11) to challenge the “oppressive, corrupt, violent and authoritarian regime” (ABC 2014 para. 11) that is their country’s government (ABC 2014). Through music as their medium of expressing, they educate the young Indonesian youths living on the streets about freedom, independence and a community that breaks away from the Sharia, the Muslim moral code (Noisey Vice, 2014).

Karli Kk Munn 2014, A small part of the massive Indonesian punk scene
Karli Kk Munn 2014, A small part of the massive Indonesian punk scene

The punks offer much more than just ideals and radical political perspective, they also educate the youths on the street through music evident in the punk rock band Majinal whom through workshops teaches the youths also known as the “Anak Merdeka”,the free children, to sing and play the ukulele both as a way of expression and to make a living (ABC 2014).

However, the Indonesian government have a different perspective on the punk movement, evident in the highly publicised incident in December 2011, where 65 youths were detained at a punk-rock concert due to “their threat to Islamic values” (The Guardian 2011 para. 13) in Aceh.

The teens that were placed in a 10 day reeducation program had their hair shaven, were forced to dress in military clothing, pray and sing nationalist songs(VICE 2014).

Chaideer Mahyuddin 2014, unks being forced to wear military uniforms and sing nationalist songs in the military re-education camp
Chaideer Mahyuddin 2014, Punks being forced to wear military uniforms and sing nationalist songs in the military re-education camp

The local police chief Iskandar Hasan expressed that “they are not violating human rights” and was just “trying to put them back on right moral path” (The Guardian para. 13) after throwing the punks into a pool for “spiritual cleansing” (The Guardian 2011).

One of the detained youths however rebut this by claiming that “We didn’t hurt anyone. This is how we’ve chosen to express ourselves. Why are they treating us like criminals?” (The Guardian 2011 para. 11).

The punk movement challenges the repressive government beliefs and judicial system of adultery  punishable by death, gays being thrown into jail and restriction in thought outside the Sharia (Noisey Vice, 2014). With the election of President Joko Widodo, the first real democratically elected president in Indonesia, and a self proclaimed “metal-head” (ABC 2013) perhaps true democracy and freedom of speech /thought can be realised. However, until then the punks will continue their crusade to fight corruption, repression and authoritarian rule.


Associated Press in Banda Aceh 2011, ‘Indonesian punks detained and shaved by police’, The Guardian, 14 December 2011, viewed on 22 April 2015, <>

Mcdonald, H 2008, ‘No End to Ambition’, Sydney Morning Herald, 28 January 2008, viewed on 22 April 2015, <>

Melville, K 2014, ‘Indonesian punk: PUNK’S NOT DEAD!’, ABC, 30 November 2014, viewed on 22 April 2015, <>

Music World 2014, “PUNK ROCK VS SHARIA LAW”, Noisey Vice, 26 February 2014, viewed on 22 April 2015, <>


Chaideer Mahyuddin 2014, Punks being forced to wear military uniforms and sing nationalist songs in the military re-education camp, Aceh, viewed on 22 April 2015 <;

Karli Kk Munn, 2014, A small part of the massive Indonesian punk scene, Indonesia, viewed on 22 April 2015, <;

Blog Post A – Indonesia Fashion Forward

Blog Post A

Indonesia, a developing country that, at 12.7%, houses the largest Muslim population in the world (Map of the world 2015), have a very significant impact on the Muslim fashion industry. With a little over 202 million citizens (Map of the world 2015) that identify themselves as Muslims, the traditional Muslim dress has taken the spotlight in Indonesian fashion scene and is being revolutionised by designers into stylish, modern pieces.

The Indonesian fashion design industry is beginning to be noticed by the government, resulting in the implementation of the Indonesian Fashion Forward Program (Jakarta Fashion Week 2015). The reasoning behind the support of the government is due to the enormous economical benefits that the fashion industry provides, with the employment of 3 million designers and garment traders and an estimate worth of nearly $100 billion in the industry (New York Post 2013).

Jakarta Fashion Week 2013, Rony Zakaria 2013
Jakarta Fashion Week 2013, Rony Zakaria 2013

The Jakarta Fashion week in 2013 highlights the revolution of Muslim wear with designers such as such as Nur Zahra, which showcased Muslim clothing could be modest while also being fashionable and modern (Nur Zahra 2014). The company’s vision is to expand Muslim Fashion to women who are new to the Hijab and those who aren’t by creating intricate yet modest designs through the use of a special Japanese tie-dying technique called Shibori (Nur Zahra 2014).

Sacagawea Collection, Nur Zahra 2014
Nur Zahra 2014, Sacagawea Collection

Another technique making a come back is Batik, meaning ‘to dot’ in Javanese (Batik Box). Batik is a traditional fabric dyeing process that involves either ‘batik tulis’, or hand drawn, and ‘batik cap’, stamped, designs (Batik Box). The Batik is special in that every different region has it’s own unique symbols, prints and processes that have been part of their local culture for thousands of years. However, many young Indonesian regard the Batik as an “old fashioned” technique and look that isn’t modern or trendy. Fashion Designer Dian Wahyu Utami took a different approach by modernising the traditional batik prints through the use of bright, rich colours in cuts that are both comfortable and fashionable.

Indonesia’s government is pushing fashion forward with a focus on their local designers, while Indonesian fashion designers continue to examine the modernisation of traditional Muslim garments through both traditional techniques such as Batik and cross cultural methods such as Shibori. The result of this revolution could push the Indonesian fashion scene to take the main stage globally especially in countries such as India, estimating to take over Indonesia as the highest populated Muslim country by 2050 (The Times of India 2015)

Batik Box, About Batik, Indonesia, viewed on 20 April 2015, <>

Jakarta Fashion Week 2015, Indonesia Fashion Forward, Indonesia, viewed on 20 April 2015, <>

Maps of World 2014, Top ten Countries with Largest Muslim Population, viewed on 20 April 2015, <;

Miller, T 2009, Mapping the Global Muslim Population: A Report on the Size and Distribution of the World’s Muslim Population, Pew Research Center, America, viewed on 20 April 2015

Muslim Village 2012, Muslim Fashion light up Jakarta Fashion Week, Indonesia, viewed on 20 April 2015, <>

New York Post 2013, Indonesian designers aim to lead Muslim fashion industry, New York, viewed on 20 April 2015, <>

NurZahra 2014, About us,  Indonesia, Viewed on 20 April 2015, <>

The Times of India 2015, By 2050, India to surpass Indonesia, will have largest Muslim population: Study, India, viewed on 20 April 2015, <>


NurZahra 2014, Sacagawea Collection,  Indonesia, Viewed on 20 April 2015, <;

Rony Zakaria 2013, Jakarta Fashion Week 2013, Jakarta, viewed on 20 April 2015, <;

Blog Post B – Food Wastage in Australia

Australian households “ throw away food worth $7.8 billion a year” (Foodwise 2013, para. 4), which amounts to 38% of all household waste in NSW. With over $158 billion spent on food, australian throw as much as 20% of it in the rubbish bin every year (ABC 2013), it has become a significant issue both economically and ethically. Fortunately, two not-for-profit organisations in Australia is trying to change that, with both statistics, education and food trucks.

FoodWise, a national educational campaign run by Do Something, an American non-profit organisation, who’s vision is to “ to reduce the environmental impact of Australia’s food consumption” (FoodWise 2013, para. 6). They have created a series of infographics that inform the public about food wastage in Australia, and provide statistic to measure food wastage such as “up to 40% of Australia household bin is food” (FoodWise 2013, para. 3). They express the importance of sustainbility in the context of food by purchasing and eating seasonal foods, and to reduce food waste such as household organic bins and compost. Jon Dee, the founder of FoodWise expresses that the way to “eat our way to a better future” (FoodWise 2013, para. 13) is a long process that can be resolved by educating the Australian population how frightening “the energy and resources it takes to get food all the way from the paddock to the plate.” (FoodWise 2013, para.5)

Fact Sheet, Foodwise 2013
Foodwise 2013, Fact Sheet

OzHarvest is another significant non-profit organisation that attempts to solve the food wastage issue in Australia. OzHarvest is the “first perishable food rescue organisation in Australia” (Ozharvest 2014, para. 1) which collects excess food from commercial outputs such as restaurants and delivers it to over 600 charities all around Australia to provide for people in need (OzHarvst 2014).

They deliver the excess food in what is now called a “food truck” (Weekend Notes 2014) with over 32 million meals delivered, saving over 10,000 tones of food being wasted (OzHarvest 2014). The founder Ronni Kahn founded the organisation in 2004, with the intention of revolutionising the food wastage issue in the hospitality industry. In order to ensure the quality of food that is being donated to OzHarvest, Kahn had managed to change the existing legislation of “supplying excess food under the Civil Liabilities Amendment Act and Heath Acts” (OzHarvest 2014, para. 2) to protect the recipient from eating food items that have gone bad.

OzHarvest Tree Of Goodness, Weekend notes 2014
Weekend notes 2014, OzHarvest Tree Of Goodness

Both organisation strive to change the food wastage issue in Australia through different means, and highlight the issue of how much food both household and the hospitality industry waste. It is a very important issue that should be pondered upon as there are many people starving in Australia, and need to be taken care of, especially the homeless population in Australia (FoodWise 2013).


Dee, J 2013, ‘Australia needs a food waste strategy’,ABC, 5 June 2013, viewed 15 April 2015, <>

Fact Check 2013, ‘Do Australians waste $8 billion worth of edible food each year?’, ABC, 15 October 2013, viewed 15 April 2015, <>

FoodWise 2013, Food Waste Fast Facts, Australia, viewed 15 April 2015,< >

FoodWise 2013, The Campaign, Australia, viewed 15 April 2015,< >

OzHarvest 2014, OzHarvest: What we do, Australia, viewed 15 April 2015, <>

Weekend Notes 2014, OzHarvest Tree Of Goodness, viewed 15 April, 2015, <>


Factwise 2013, Fact Sheet Infographic, Australia, viewed 15 April 2015, <;

Weekend notes 2014, OzHarvest Food Trucks Deliver Produce to Charitable Organisations in Adelaide, Adelaide,  viewed on 15 April 2015, <;