Tag Archives: history

Kids.. The Walls, Doors and Exhibited Objects in the Museum Are Not Meant to be Vandalised!

1 Jan

Children, you're not supposed to write on the walls!

I enjoy photography as well as drawing. A couple of my friends and I went on a day trip to North Jakarta’s Kota Tua (Old City) for photography hunting. The first museum we went to was the Fatahillah Museum. The building was beautiful, I am a sucker for old colonial buildings! When we were there, a lot of school children were also there for a field trip. However, it didn’t seem like they know what they were doing there… They were taking pictures of themselves with their mobile phones, flirtingwith their girlfriends/boyfriends, gossiping.. But what irritated me the most were the children who vandalised the museum! They were writing on the walls, the doors, and even on the exhibited objects!

When I arrived in the museum, I already noticed writing on the walls, doors and the exhibited objects and I thought those were writings from people a long time ago, but – apparently not! They’re still doing it, and they were doing it in front of my eyes! I met this junior high school student who was busy writing on the door.. with a white-out! Now, how can I not be angry at the kid?? So I told him off politely. I said “Excuse me, but please don’t write on the door, this is a public space, and supposed to be protected and preserved.” His answer was stupid. He said “Don’t panic, it’ll disappear, it’s just for fun”. Oh… my… Goodness. WHAT have they been teaching you at school? Is this the reflection of the education system we have in Indonesia??

The whole museum looked like it wasn’t well looked after. The explanations of the exhibited objects weren’t even complete. Most of them were only printed explanations, laminated and stuck on the wall by double tape. It was pathetic and heartbreaking. It was actually understandable why children would write all over the place, because the museum looked unmaintained in the first place! Very different to the Wayang Museum we went to next. The place looked clean, well maintained, therefore children weren’t bold enough to vandalise the place.

Mr. Jero Wacik (our Minister of Culture and Tourism) .. or anyone who will become the Minister of Culture and Toursim in the future… PLEASE DO SOMETHING!



Historical Artifacts Are Supposed to be Preserved and Protected

31 Dec

Don't sell historical artifacts!

It really saddens me when I know that the Indonesian historical artifacts in the Museums are only replicas, because the real ones are sold overseas. Many of the traditional daggers which are exhibited in the Solonese Royal Palace are also replicas, the real ones are sold for big money, and what’s more shocking is that the Solonese King (King Paku Buwono the 13th) did not even sign any letters which states his agreement to sell these historical daggers to someone outside the palace walls – so basically, these daggers were stolen.

In a sugar plantation, in Karangrejo Village, subdistrict of Garum, regency of Blitar, East Java, a statue of Shiva was found. After being examined by archeologists, the statue is now known to be made sometime between the years 700 – 900 AC. However, they later found out that under that plantation, hundreds of statues are still buried underground. Local people were starting to believe that it was probably an ancient city which had been buried through time. The Government of East Java had secured the place so nobody can steal the statues. BUT… of course there are some who were desperate for money and willing to do whatever to sell those statues. Some would sneak into the plantation at night.

I know that the economic value of these statues are very high, but can’t the people see that these artifacts are extremely important to preserve in order to build our national identity? Many people say that “we should move on fromĀ  the past”, but in this case, we have to learn how to appreciate our past to be able to face the future. Our ancestors created community, culture, tradition. Because of them, we exist. So when we see a historical artifact, donate it to the museum, to be studied, protected, preserved and looked after.