Archive for the ‘Cultuur en Religie’ Category

Book on Maestro Lempad launched

The Dagger Attack On Rangda

I Wayan Juniarta, The Jakarta Post, Ubud, Bali | Archipelago | Sat, June 21 2014, 11:17 AM

The first-ever comprehensive book on I Gusti Nyoman Lempad, the late Balinese painter, sculptor and architect, was launched Thursday night at the Agung Rai Museum of Arts (ARMA) in Ubud, with poet and journalist Goenawan Mohamad drawing a parallel between Lempad and Spanish legend Pablo Picasso.

“Lempad is one of two painters in the world who were able to present the erotic subject-matter in a profound and meaningful way. The first was Lempad, the second was Picasso,” Goenawan said.

Goenawan recalled that he first met Lempad in 1968, during which the great maestro showed him a series of his paintings on Jaya Prana Layon Sari, a local tragic love folklore story.

The paintings touched Goenawan not only because they spoke about the struggle between the common people against an oppressive king, but also because they underlined Lempad’s mastery in capturing the beauty of human body.

“The paintings mesmerized me of the respect and appreciation of the human form. In his works, erotic subject matter transcended mere eroticism and the human body rose above its physical properties,” he said.

Lempad was born in 1862 and died in 1978 was an undagi, a Balinese term for a respected multi-talented artist, well-known for his black and white paintings, masterful lines and his enduring love for folklore.

He was also an accomplished architect of ritual paraphernalia, including cremation towers and wooden sarcophagi. His sculptures and carvings decorate important temples in Gianyar and Ubud and he also played an important role in the design and construction of Ubud’s Puri Lukisan Museum and Pura Taman Saraswati , a temple famous for its lotus pond.

Lempad, a Timeless Balinese Master is a weighty 312-page hardcover, which is richly illustrated with his work, including those displayed in museums abroad and in private collections.

It was co-authored by Jean Couteau — a French scholar who has lived in Bali for decades and played a pivotal role in deciphering the island’s contemporary arts to the Western audience —, Ana Gaspar and Antonio Casanova.

Gaspar and Casanova are wealthy art collectors that specialize in pre-modern arts. The couple first encountered Lempad’s works seven years ago when they visited the Lempad Pavillion at the Neka Art Museum.

“The works instantly gave me goosebumps,” Casanova recalled.

“I was instantly aware that he must be a very powerful artist, one that was still connected to nature and lived in accordance with the old ways,” he said adding that he had tried to find information and books on Lempad but was unsuccessful.

“It was then that I decided to write a book on Lempad.”

(c) The Jakarta Post

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

Besakih: Making the Sacred Less Profane

Bali Chairman of Tour Operators Association Explains Why the Island’s Most Sacred Temple of Besakih is Absent from Local Tour Activities

The Jakarta Post quotes the chairman of the Bali chapter of the Indonesian Tour and Travel Agencies (ASITA-Bali) Ketut Ardana who admits that many tour and travel agencies avoid or limit offering Bali’s Mother Temple of Besakih due to poor service, inadequate infrastructure and the resulting negative customer experience.

Ardana said that, like many destinations on Bali, Pura Besakih need a revamped focus on visitor satisfaction in order not to be blacklisted from tour itineraries.

Ardana acceded that although Besakih was of keen interest to tourists, aggressive and coercive free-lance guides and parking attendants who charge high fees have taken the shine off the “Besakih experience.” He also noted large quantities of trash and debris at Besakih that is left unattended after the frequent ceremonies held at the temple complex.

“We’ve took Besakih off our list several years ago. We’ve actually filed complaints about these issues, but the management (of the complex) has not done anything significant,” Ardana explained.

Adana said it was always possible for local communities to take the necessary steps to redeem a destination’s reputation, citing Kintamani and Sangeh where services have recently improved.

The hilltop location of Kintamani was plagued by boat operators offering trips on lake while charging illegal fees, an abundance of trash and insistent beggars and street vendors that were a vexation to tourist visitors. Over the past three years, however, steps by local and the government to improve services and the designation of the area as a World Geopark has done much to restore Kintamani’s reputation of the regency of Bangli’s top tourism destination.

Similarly, the Sangeh monkey forest has seen the number of complaints from tourists decline following clean-up efforts and the introduction of steps to control contact between visitors and the site’s monkeys.

Said Ardana, “We consider Sangeh a safe and comfortable place for tourists.”

Hoping that improvements could be also introduced at the Besakih Temple complex, Ardana called on the Karanasem regency administration to control local tour guides and their aggressive behavior towards visitors could be addressed.

© Bali Discovery Tours.

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

How The Village Of Ubud Came To Be

How The Village Of Ubud Came To Be

Long, Long Ago , back in the far misty memory of time, there was an East Indian priest named Rsi Markandeya. It was in the 8th century that this priest, according to a “Lontar”  (traditional palm leaf book), set off on spiritual journey, walking across the island of Java to spread the teachings of Hinduism.

Eventually, he and his large group of followers reached the island of Bali and attempted to settle in the vicinity of Taro (a locale north of Ubud). Unluckily, they were struck down by a cholera epidemic and many perished. Rsi Markandeya led the surviving devotees back to Java, where they re-grouped and after a while made their way to Bali again, although this time their number was somewhat diminished.

Upon returning to Bali, the priest  was drawn to a place where the two branches of the river Wos converged, pulled there by the intense energy and light which emanated from this spot. Rsi Markandeya was inspired to meditate there and while doing so, received a strong message from the Gods. They told him to proceed to Mount Agung(Bali’s center of spirituality), and there he was to bury five precious metals (Panca Datu) in the ground as a foundation of power for the temple of Besakih (known in Bali as the Mother Temple).

This he and his followers did, and afterwards they returned to settle in the spiritually potent location where the two rivers joined, known as Campuhan.  There, in that mystical vortex of nature, he and his faithful followers constructed a temple and they named it Pura Gunung Lebah.

Now growing along the banks of the two rivers were many kinds of plants with marvelous healing qualities, so they christened their new home UBAD, which translated to the healing place or medicine.

Through the following centuries and continuing up to the present time, many Hindu devotees have come regularly to this special place to meditate, bathe and take some of the holy water for cleansing rituals and temple ceremonies. With the passing  of time, the name UBAD gradually evolved to the name UBUD.

(c) Written by  Debora Crowley

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

At Agung’s Wedding

Agung's Wedding
+Dirk Weemaes

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

Bali by the Book

Ubud Writers and Readers Festival 2013 October 11-15.

Bali News: Bali by the Book

More than 170 famous writers, performers, artists, musicians and visionaries are slated to appear at the 2013 Ubud Writers and Readers Festival (UWRF) to be held October 11-15, 2013.

Coming to the festival are U.K. bestselling author Sebastian Faulks (Birdsong, Devil May Care), Lionel Shriver (We Need to Talk about Kevin), Lonely Planet co-founder Tony Wheeler, Australian cartoonist Michael Luenig and Richard Flanagan.
Coming to the Ubud festival in 2013 are Man Booker long-listed authorsvRuth Ozeki (A Tale for the Time Being) and Tash Aw (Five Star Billionaire) and India literary pop star Amish Tripathi. Other international guests include David Vann (Legend of a Suicide), two-time Miles Franklin winnerKim Scott (That Deadman Dance), American talent Nami Munn, and one of France’s most prolific writers, Alain Mabanckou.
A world-class line-up of Indonesia’s finest and most successful writers and thinkers — including preeminent poet and man-of-letters Goenawan Mohamad; award-winning writer Ayu Utami; bestselling author and singer, celebrated filmmaker Garin Nugroho; Laksmi Pamuntjak, Ahmad Fuadi and more than 45 others — ensures the 2013 Festival represents the best of Indonesian literature.
Along with the 75 sessions comprising the main program spread across three main venues, another 40 venues across Ubud will host special events, literary and cultural workshops, book launches, art programs and film screenings.
Free children’s and youth programs, including a special workshop with bestselling children’s book writer Morris Gleitzman will engage visitors of all ages.

Over five days and nights, Ubud will come alive with live music and performances, food and art markets and parties that run late into the night. Expect fascinating cross-cultural conversations, high-profile international authors, and the opportunity to discover new and exciting local voices at this year’s Ubud Writers & Readers Festival.

All literary paths lead to Ubud, Bali this October!
© Bali Discovery Tours.

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

Ubud’s Mastery in Art of Tourism

 

Now here’s a challenge: visit Bali’s cultural center of Ubud and not see any art. Creativity is everywhere here, from pura (temples) to palaces, galleries to gardens, with shops and handicrafts and lovingly decorated shrines. In this village there is a sense that beauty is cherished, though in general Bali is one island that really knows how to work a stone carving and a water feature.

Walking around Ubud it seems every second shop is a gallery, or has art for sale, with almost too much to choose from should the traveler decide to buy.

Ubud’s history goes back to the 8th century, when a Javanese Buddhist priest meditated at the confluence of the two Wos rivers at Campuhan, just west of the modern-day town centre. A shrine was established and the area became a centre of natural medicine and healing, giving Ubud its name from ubad, ancient Balinese for medicine.

To appreciate contemporary Balinese art it’s useful to look at some classical Balinese art, and west of town on Jalan (street) Sanggingan is a good place to start. Here you’ll find the Neka Art Museum, which aims to help visitors learn more about Balinese art and culture, with a rich collection of local, Indonesian and global works. Collector and former teacherSuteja Neka established the museum, which opened in 1982, to help preserve Bali’s artistic legacy, and the surrounding gardens are cool on a hot afternoon.

Walking towards town you will pass a number of small galleries, and another worth a look is Sika, which has been promoting contemporary Indonesian and Balinese fine art since 1996. Collections by young and established artists are displayed around a peaceful courtyard.

Symon‘s large “Art Zoo” studio is a bit further down, and this entertaining American (who ran away from home when he was 17 to look for writer Henry Miller) has lived in Indonesia for decades, producing paintings drawing on Balinese customs and pop art. He said he was moving from this location, but welcomes visitors to his “Art Zoo Camp Color”, two hours north of Ubud (inquiries: symon@symonstudios.com).

Eating is also an art, and Ubud is fortunate to have a world-class restaurant in Mozaic, located approximately halfway between Sika and Neka. Mozaic serves culinary art – an innovative blend of classic French techniques and Indonesian ingredients. It offers an experience rather than just a meal; on arrival guests relax in the slickly modern lounge with a canapé before they are escorted to the tropical gardens, where the soft lighting is perfect for romantic foodies.

French-American chef Chris Salans opened his award-winning venture in 2001, and it was the first restaurant in SE Asia to be recognized as one of Les Grandes Tables du Monde, and is listed as the best restaurant in Indonesia by Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants 2013. Diners choose from four six-course degustation menus, including a vegetarian option, with optional wine pairings by sommelier Cok Bagus Senajaya from the excellent winelist. The “Discovery” menu incorporated local ingredients, such as ginger flower (its gel a rose-flushed base for seared king prawns), delicately spiced baby starfruit with glazed Tasmanian salmon in a perfectly seasoned broth, and sweet kluwek puree accompanying a slow-roasted duck breast with a crunchy orange-hazelnut salad.

Continue down the hill, towards the Wos River ravine and Campuhan Bridges, towards town, and on the right there will be signs for the Antonio Blanco museum, dedicated to preserving the flamboyant works of the “Bali Dali”.

Across the bridge going up on the left hand side, an Australian teacher called Sandy Elliott recently opened Sari Aktif, an agency for organizing all kinds of local activities. If you want to commission a work and don’t where to start, she knows a range of local artists and can offer guidance.

In busy Monkey Forest Rd, Komaneka is an attractive modern gallery with changing exhibitions. Ubud also has many shops selling homewares. For the best shopping, head north on Jalan Raya Andong (the road to the Tegallalang rice terraces) – it’s a virtualhandicrafts highway.

For art with less bustle, there is Alam Puri Art Museum & Resort, a boutique hotel with gardens and innumerable water features that are a work of beauty in themselves. To reach its 10 villas of varying sizes and sumptuousness, you pass its own gallery, the Putrawan Museum of Art, which contains the only collection of tribal art in Indonesia.

Located about 20 minutes south of Ubud (shuttle provided), Alam (meaning view) Puri (meaning kingdom) is set in about three acres of grounds, with a view of another 70 acres of peaceful rice paddies. The villas are named after artists – and feature plenty of art – as the owner is a collector and painter. It also has an intimate spa, next to the small river, open to light breezes, where relaxing but firm Balinese massage is accompanied by the sound of birds and tumbling water.

Back in Ubud again, the Agung Rai Museum of Art, is another venerable institution in attractive grounds which shows traditional and contemporary works. On my first visit to Ubud I recall seeing a cremation (street procession, body exhumed and placed in decorated bull for incineration) in the Monkey Forest in the morning, and paintings of past cremations that were remarkably similar at ARMA that afternoon.

Of course not everyone comprehends the need to create art. But most people understand the need to dispose of garbage, and they might appreciate Oh Waste in Jalan Jembawan (near the post office) where recycle artist Pat makes bracelets and accessories from old tyres and discarded toothbrushes.

(c) Carolyn O’Donnell 

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

The Best that Indonesia has to Offer

 Tanah Lot Temple, Bali, Indonesia

With amazing places to visit in Indonesia spread across more than 17,000 islands, you’ll never run out of opportunities for adventure and cultural interaction. Each region is unique and has something to offer intrepid travelers.
Join the ride as we travel across the major tourist spots in Indonesia which you should include in your itinerary. Moving across Indonesia’s archipelago takes time. You’re better off focusing on one or two regions to explore rather than rushing around.

Bali:

The island of Bali is a picture perfect destination with its green vines, blooming flowers, wide beaches, blue water, and green volcanic scenery. It is one of the most visited islands in Southeast Asia and a top honeymoon destination in Asia.

But Bali is not only resort life and beaches, the Kintamani region in the interior is lush and gorgeous, while Ubud is famous as the cultural center with its numerous temples, thanks to additional fame from the hit movie Eat, Pray, Love. If you are looking for an active nightlife, Kuta is the party epicenter.

The small fishing village of Tulamben on the northeast coast of Bali is famous for the wreck of the US Army transport ship that was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine in 1942.

Sumatra:

Sumatra has something for everyone to explore – lush rainforests, exotic flora and fauna, cascading rivers, sparkling crater lakes, beautiful white sand beaches, impressive volcanoes, and limestone caves.

A major attraction here is Lake Toba – the largest volcanic lake surrounded by some of the best natural marvels, Mentawai Islands, where one can enjoy trekking and windsurfing, Bukit Lawang, where one can  encounter both semi-wild and wild orangutans, along with a whole host of other endangered species.

If you are looking for adventure then climb Gunung Sibayak and Gunung Sinabung, which is Sumatra’s most attractive volcanoes.

Lake Toba
Lombok:

After Bali, go towards east to Lombok – a place dotted with powdery white sands, astonishing blue corals and marine life.

A popular destination here not to be missed for sea and mountain lovers alike is Gili Islands, where the atmosphere is very relaxed and laid-back. For the adventurous, trek at Gunung Rinjani or surf the great waves at coast. To relax, head out in day trips to Sengigi for it’s long sweeping bay or to the east at Sumbawa.

Mt Bromo
Java:

Java is often overshadowed by the next-door neighbor, Bali but the place has its own charm, including white-sand beaches, breathtaking ancient religious monuments and huge volcanic peaks.

Mt Bromo, an active volcano in Java, is the most visited in Indonesia. If you are looking for a unique combination of ancient temples, history, traditions and culture then Yogyakarta is a worthwhile place to visit. Borobudur – one of the most famous Buddhist temple in the world – and Prambanan temple complex is a major stop on the tourist route.

Copyright © 2013 Tripvillas

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

Colors of Bali by Theo Zantman

According to Arie Smith - the renown master of color and composition –  Theo Zantman is a highly original artist and one of the very few painters alive who have the ability to feel and to paint the atmosphere of Bali with talent and authenticity. bridges is proud to show the work of this exceptional artist. To celebrate the launch on 19 July, 4-7pm, we have planned a Balinese DIVINE Friday: Drinks, music, complimentary canapés, dance and Rindik performance. Meet the artist, explore his work. 20% of the proceeds donated to the John Fawcett Foundation whose representatives will join us as well for this special event.

Read more on the exhibition: www.bridgesbali.com/theo-zantman.php

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

We’ve Looked at Bali From Both Sides No

Two Faces of Bali – Photography and Mask Exhibition at Bridges in Ubud April 19 – July 14, 2013

In support of Bali Kids, the work of two talented artists – Jayesh Madhoo and I Wayan Muka will be exhibited at Bridges in Ubud starting from Friday, April 19, 2013.

The exhibition will run until July 14, 2013.

Click Image to Enlarge

Two Faces of Bali is an exhibition of photography and traditional Balinese masks. “We are delighted to have Jayesh and I Wayan Muka exhibiting their work together at bridges. The stunning photos and fascinating masks are showing two different arts how Bali’s profound significance is explored,” said Claude Chouinard, founder of Bridges. 

South African-born photographer Jayesh Madhoo captures touching moments of beauty and variety in the daily life of Bali. The exhibition shows the photographer’s initial steps on a journey into the realms of discovery regarding the rites, rituals and customs of Balinese people’s culture and traditions. The photography on display at bridges is a multifaceted burst of colorful faces of Bali, in portraits, flowers or ceremonial artifacts.

Mask maker I Wayan Muka studied mask making with many Balinese masters. The works of this exceptional mask carver are incredibly artistic and intricate. Muka enjoys making his masks come alive and will demonstrate this on the opening night of the exhibition.

Bridges supports the charity foundation Bali Kids by donating 20% of the proceeds of the sales of art from this exhibition.

Bali Kids is an inspirational support organization established in 2005 that helps sick and orphaned children in Bali. Every year Bali Kids reaches out to more than 7,000 disadvantaged children providing health education, including a wide range of medical services, such as expert treatment for children who are HIV+.

Bali Kids aims to become the best program in Bali assisting poor children to access quality medical treatment and health education.

(www.balikids.org)

To welcome the Two Faces of Bali Exhibition a special opening night launch has been prepared by Bridges Bali that will incorporate music and dance

For more details contact [Email Hani]  or telephone ++62-(0)361-2120095.

TWO FACES OF BALI – Photography and Mask Exhibition

Bridges Bali 
Jl. Raya Campuhan, Ubud, Bali
Telephone. +62-(0)361-970095
Friday, April 18 2013
5:00-7:30 pm
Exhibition runs until July 14, 2013

RSVP +62-(0)361-970095

[Exhibition Website]
© Bali Discovery Tours

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+

Das Ende ist mein Anfang

dasende

Dit boek kreeg ik van een Zwitserse vrouw die met haar man 3 nachten in Villa Sabandari  logeerde.
‘Het is een heel mooi boek’ zei ze, ‘… en ook op u van toepassing’ voegde ze er, wat cryptisch, aan toe.
Ook op mij van toepassing? In de betekenis van ‘zoals op iedereen van toepassing’ of specifiek op mij van toepassing vroeg ik me af toen ze al weg waren en ik de achterflap had gelezen.
Moet ik nu in paniek raken? Knipogende emoticon
Hoe dan ook, ons bibliotheekje is een boek rijker.
Waarvoor dank.
dasendetxt

Rustig hotel in Ubud Bali

About Dirk Weemaes

Keeping an eye on Villa Sabandari since 2009. Google+