Mieke Sahala Hutabarat: Larung Budaya for A Life Balance


One of the ways that can be done to bring back the consciences of Indonesia as a maritime country is by doing Larung Budaya. One of the example is Larung Budaya that entitled “Larung Budaya Nusantara’ which held on August 10th, 2015 in Lakolinlamil Tanjung Priok, North Jakarta. The activity was pioneered by an artist, and also a curator of metal art from Semarang, Central Java, Mieke Shala Hutabarat, and was supported by Indonesia Ministry of Research and Technology (Kemenristek RI).

Mieke said that this event is initiated to present a lost spirit in the culture of Indonesia. “The President of Indonesia, Joko Widodo, has declared that in the future, Indonesia will going to be Poros Maritim Dunia. And if we learn in the basic, “Nenek Moyangku Seorang Pelaut” (My Ancestors is a sailor) so this event must be held to restore the positioning of Indonesia as a maritime country,” she said to ITS some time ago.

Since a long time ago, in fact, Indonesia has a strong maritime power. Even since the Majapahit era, there were already a great sea admiral namely Laksamana Nala, who managed to expand the power of Indonesia marine to Ghana and New Caledonia, a great power and larger than this time. “Let us not forget that our country is NKRI archipelago, where 73% immense is ocean,” Mieke said.

Larung Budaya is one of the expressions of the gratitude to God for all the beauties and resources are abundant. “As you know, Larung itself is not a new culture. As Marine Country, Indonesia has already been have it for a long time. But sometimes, we often forget how to manage our own resources we have in a balanced, and of course according to local wisdom,” added Mieke. “This country (Indonesia, -red) need people who do not only smart/clever, but also sincerely to serve. People who are willing to build a better nation voluntarily,” she said firmly.

It was not only that, this larung tradition is expected to remind people to be able to make a balancing with nature. Try to understand how to manage the balance between nature and human, human with the resources, and mineral resources as well. “The God giving a blessing to us, but it is not to be ruined and exploited. Time flies, people changed. The amount of people increases significantly but we just only have one source. In this case, of course we needs local wisdom to make it well managed,” she explained. “I am more emphasis in developing the human nature, the character of a human being, ” she added.

As a metal designer, Mieke always give the philosophy for every designs. Her grand design has become as an inspiration for all cultures. “By 2002, I had to make a grand design titled “Udan Kaweruh Kabudayan” and has been published in Kompas Daily Newspaper. The word of ‘Kabudayan’ is refer to the culture that already been in our society, could be a custom and habit that will always be preserved. The word of ‘kaweruh’ explained the cultural function with its philosophy,” said Mieke steady.

At that time, I use the Borobudur as a main subject, because Borobudur build the honesty and power. A power will not be present if there is no sanctification in ourselves. She admired the leadership of Syailendra and Samaratungga`s dynasty, about how they were could lead wisely and conquer many areas. Mieke poured its philosophy to a beautiful brooch. “I hope every human being who are enjoy my design could participate and delved into its interpretation, so in the latter days, they could be a better person,” she said vividly.

It was not only that, at that time, Mieke has also made batik through metal art. She has tried to educate the batik seller to introduced the philosophy of batik. One of the example is the pattern of “Beras Wutah’ which means that we have to work hard in order that we could continue to survive, stay alive, etc

In addition of her workloads as an artist and a metal designer, Mieke is also active in social activities that related to humanity. After the year of 2000, she supported by Mrs. Ani Numberi, to make a contribution and helping poor people.

At that time, Mieke held the first Marine Expo in Diponegoro University (Undip). She also provide assistance to the schools that are affected by the floods causing by water rob in the northern coast route in Java island. (Pantura)

Besides, the wife of Professor The  Marine and Oceanography was also established ‘Rumah Pintar’ in Wakatobi at the end of 2011 for the children in Bajau. “I motivated by saw a video on television, where many children in Bajau are dropping out of school. Then they even encourage money in order to get back to the school,” she touched.

Her desire was supported by Mrs Poernomo Yusgiantoro, who finally also gave Rumah Pintar for Bajau. “So there were two houses, and it has been given above of the tribes of the sea. Its function is conserve the people in Bajau so that they could moving forward. It also provide industrial centers, creative center, and there is also computer access so that they can connect with other people outside their circle,” Mieke accused. In the future, she hope that the living standards and quality of people in Bajau can be increased better. This program also receive a big support from the Ministry of Defense (Hankam), and also JNE.

Recently, she is also contributing to build the ‘Rumah Pintar’ in Nias. It belongs to those people in Nias who are affected by the earthquake hit some time ago. “Actually, the Larung Budaya itself was also an effort and movement to return and make a better change. Its a gratitude to the God for all the beauties and resources are abundant. Later, Larung could held in various tourist destinations in Indonesia,” she said. However, of course, this event also have to get support from various parties.

Mieke is also highly appreciate the support that given by KEMENRISTEK RI so Larung Budaya can be accomplished. Her biggest wish is that NKRI Archipelago through Larung Budaya, can encourage the traditional fishermen to have a better living, a better life. And of course it is need to accompanied with prayer and also with sustainable efforts in order to make Indonesia as Poros Maritim Dunia. [Vinia]