TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Tourism and Creative Economy Minister Sandiaga Salahuddin Uno has urged the community to preserve and promote batik at the commemoration of National Batik Day, which is observed on October 2 every year.
"We need to not only preserve batik, but also to promote it together to increase its economic value," he emphasized at the opening of the 2021 National Batik Day virtual commemoration organized by the arts association, Mitra Seni Indonesia, on Saturday.
Furthermore, he asked the public to pay attention to batik craftspeople by showing their love and pride in them and buying the cloth as well as wearing it at every opportunity.
This would keep batik crafting activities running in the midst of the pandemic, he said.
Indonesian batik was recognized by UNESCO as a Masterpieces of The Oral and Intagible Heritage of the Humanity on October 2, 2009, he noted.
Batik is a handicraft with high artistic value and has been a part of Indonesian culture since the 4th century, especially Java Island, he said.
In addition, the cloth has a long history, he noted. Thus, every batik pattern has a certain philosophy related to social status, as well as cultural, local, natural, and historical aspects or meaning related to values of life, Uno said.
"The establishment of the National Batik Day is one of the government’s attempts to increase Indonesia’s dignity and positive image at international forums as well as to foster the love and pride of the Indonesian people for their national culture," he added.
Meanwhile, the head of Mitra Seni Indonesia, Sari Ramdani, expressed the hope that the association, through the virtual commemoration, would be able to encourage the millennial generation to love and wear batik on various occasions.
"Amid the pandemic, we are concerned about the reduced income of batik craftspeople due to marketing difficulties. Thus, we have to help encourage them by buying their products," she said.