Published in NOW! Jakarta & NOW! Bali, July 2009

Bali’s International Art Community

Last month I was invited to the 50th birthday party of renowned Bali-based, New York artist Ashley Bickerton at the trendy beach-side Semaya Villas in Seminyak. Ashley’s Jakartan wife Renjani had arranged a long white dining table in a white tent in the garden, and also the illumination of the Indian Ocean.
It was most atmospheric!

Renjani Damais-Arifin and her husband Ashley Bickerton.

Cynthia and John Hardy

Millie Togasa of Kaizan Restaurant, Seminyak

Publisher-photographer Leonard Lueras & Sati, a batik artist from Jogyakarta.

Ashley B (shirt by Sati) and Made Wijaya
On the 30th of May le tout Bali-Italienne gathered in the former pleasure gardens of the imperial palace in Klungkung to witness the official opening of the Emilio Ambron Museum by the Italian Ambassador to Indonesia H.H. Roberto Palmeiri; and to inaugurate the start of Idanna Pucci’s restoration of the Kertha Gosa ceilings, with the painters of Kamasan Village.
Viva Italia!

H.E. the Italian Ambassador to Indonesia Roberto Palmieri and Signora Adriana Palmieri

Restu Imansari Kusumaningrum of The Bali Purnati Center For The Arts, one of the event’s organizers.

Italian Honorary Consul in Bali Pino Confessa and Idanna Pucci

Milo and Idanna Pucci

Bapak Merta and Terence Ward

Fiona Waworuntu-Pury
Mystical magical musical Sumo-meets-Semar Jowo Chub-a-thon
at Galeri Nasional, Jakarta, 5th June 2009

Imagine a production line ala Cabaret of thirty steamy Semars in psychedelic Monty Python meets Pakubuwono costumes..... grinding, voguing, fondling and front of the neo-classical ‘Galeri Nasional’, Jakarta ......Greg Churchill, the Governor of Jakarta, Dr. Fauzi Bowo and the ever-gorgeous Nina Akbar Tanjung in the front row of a packed ‘house’ (carpark) of enthusiastic Java-o-philes and Chub-chasers...... and you have an idea of the incredible, mind-expanding event and heart-warming event that mushroomed like an atomic cloud in Central Jakarta last night!!! The expert cast—a mixture of Jakarta and Solo’s finest , fattest Semars and Java’s best kidung, wayang and stage performers—entertained with an exciting mix of the modern and the ancient, the secular and the profoundly profane, the steamy and the showy........with giant puppets, a brilliant netherworld-inspiring set, and one 250 kilo grand master Semar, Slamet Gundono who strummed the ukulele while strutting around as a Bob Fosse class ringmaster! Hebat!!!
The performance was held in conjunction with the launch of Greg Churchill, Subandi Martha, Hanuri Setiadi and Sigit Prakasa’s book ‘Semar Semarak – Images of Semar in Indonesian Folk Arts and an exhibition of twenty Semar ceramic sculptures by F. Widayanto.

Sculptor F. Widayanto signs one of his Semar collection books.

Greg Churchill (back) and Mr. Brian Gumulya.

Governor of DKI Jakarta, Dr. Fauzi Bowo being interviewed.

(From left to right) Barbara Johnson, Wieneke de Groot, Mark Edleson and Mary Edleson.

Slamet Gundono,the master of ceremonies, performs with his ukulele

On stage Pia Alisyahbana, Tubagus ‘Andre’ Sukmana, Gregory Churchill and Romo Sindhu

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