Wandering through the streets of Yogyakarta one night, my friend Anne and I stumbled upon an inspiring art fair, Delayota Art #9: Towards Prosperity, celebrating the burgeoning freedom in Indonesia under President Joko Widodo, newly elected in July 2014. We were approached by a local high-school student, Sonya, who gave us a tour of the art, produced by three local high schools, illustrating their vision for the future of Indonesia. This art depicted the students’ optimism for the opportunities for prosperity and religious acceptance, and their gratitude for the growing freedom of speech and political expression. For several decades freedom of speech and other human rights issues had been a suppressed, and even during a visit in December, an international delegation visiting Indonesia raised concerns about the current state of media freedom. I was moved by how earnestly the student’s used their art to engage their own citizenship and their pride and enthusiasm in expressing their opinions. What will the future of Indonesia be? I hope these young people will get to realize their visions of prosperity, freedom and justice.
"Refromasi, Bebas, Berkreasi!": "Reform, Freedom, Creativity"
Susanne is an architectural and urban historian interested in social activism in design.
Ayda Melika is an architectural historian and filmmaker interested in the spatial manifestations of collective activism.