Islamabad - The Indonesian Women Association hosted a Coffee Morning here yesterday with an aim to give the guests an opportunity to understand Indonesia’s diverse culture.

The purpose of the event was to educate the women about the philosophical, cultural and historical values of Indonesia through the signature Indonesian textile called Batik, said a statement released by the Indonesia embassy.

 The host Rita Berlinia Amri, spouse of the Indonesian Ambassador, welcomed the guests at the workshop that was themed as “Nurturing Friendship by Cross Culture Understanding.”

The guests who turned up in big numbers included ladies from the diplomatic community based in Islamabad, Pakistan Foreign Office Women’s Association and ladies from the cross sections of the society.

Chairperson IWA Rita Berlinia Amri said that Indonesia being a land of diverse cultures had a tremendous variety of colorful art forms with Batik being the most famous. She elaborated that the word batik originates from the Javanese “tik” and means to dot.

The art of decorating cloth in this way, using wax and dye, has been practiced for centuries in Indonesia and as a wonderful creative medium increasingly becoming popular across the world, she added. 

She mentioned that Batik has been added to the Representative List of UNESCO’s World Intangible Cultural Heritage by recognizing Indonesia as the origin and home to this exclusive art form.

 To conduct the workshop, the Embassy had invited two batik maestros Fonna Melania and Koswara Kusuma from the Sukabumi Region of Java Island to share and teach some basics of this wonderful ancient art form to the participants.

Many of participants quickly picked up the technique and with the assistance of the instructors were able to produce their own designs of Batik.

They discovered how the history, traditions, religious beliefs and geography has evolved and shaped Indonesian culture and how beautifully and artistically it is expressed in this creative medium of Batik.

 Besides Batik Workshop, the Coffee Morning also featured a Workshop on Gamelan which is an ancient traditional orchestra of Indonesia. 

The Workshop was a practical short introduction to the cultural context of gamelan and a chance to have a go at playing the instruments.

 The participants appreciated Madam Rita Amri and her colleagues from Indonesian Women Association for giving them an opportunity to be a part of the Indonsesian cultural experience.