Arts and Culture
This presentation analyses explorations of social and environmental problems and solutions in artistic representations of the Indonesian countryside and rural society, culture and wisdom. It focuses on urban-rural creative collaborations that combine traditional culture and knowledge with modern technology and media such as drones and the Internet to empower local communities, promote artistic innovation and enhance environmental sustainability. It critically examines these representations and collaborations by positioning them in a history of artistic engagements with the environment and the countryside in the Indonesian archipelago, dating back to modern painting traditions during colonial times. This presentation seeks to demonstrate that contemporary art and media strengthen the urban-rural networking and the accessibility and exchange of creative ideas and information. At the same time, I will argue that some of the causes of cultural conflict and anthropogenic disaster are embedded in forms of audio-visual representation itself, including the display of urban-rural encounters in art festivals and social media. Art and social media projects can even instigate new forms of surveillance and control or reinforce regimes of consumer culture partially responsible for the very problems the audio-visual representations and collaborations seek to address.