Culture


Bali’s Local Market on Canvas

Art In Bali | Feb 18, 2020

Local markets are a great source of inspiration for painters in Bali and, as contributor Bruce Granquist explains, these bustling scenes become all the more interesting when painted in the intricate and detailed form of the Batuan painting style. Daily Life Everyday life of Bali, both traditional and contemporary, is a rich source of visual […]

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Sandya Gita Kotamaning Bayu

Culture | Feb 17, 2020

A loud cheer erupted as the master of ceremony completed his introduction for the next performance. It was an exciting evening at the Bali Art Festival, as the dance troupe of Badung regency was in a final, head-to-head battle with the representatives of Jembrana regency. A senior lady sat next to me, complementing the previous […]

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Madiksa: A Priest’s Second Birth

Culture | Feb 13, 2020

To become a Balinese Hindu high priest, or sulinggih, prospective priests must first go through the madiksa ritual. Some refer to it as a ‘death ritual’, as for the priest to be reborn as a new, cleansed man or woman, he or she must first “die”. A prerequisite to become a Catholic priest is being […]

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Wayan Arnata: Traditional Practices Fused with Contemporary Ideas

Art In Bali | Feb 12, 2020

Balinese artist Wayan Arnata first came to my attention in June 2013 in the landmark exhibition ‘Irony in Paradise’ by the collective Sanggar Dewata Indonesia (SDI) at the Agung Rai Museum of Art (ARMA) in Ubud, Bali.  ‘Nike Barong’ 2013, Arnata’s mixed media reflection upon the changing nature of the Balinese identity depicted the iconic […]

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The Cosmic Complexities of Balinese Love

Culture | Jan 31, 2020

In Bali, love and indeed sex are more than just about the relationship between two people. It is about the gods, the cosmos, the cycle of life. For most Westerners love oscillates between two poles: on one side there is the romantic meeting of two individuals, and on the other side, the sexual encounter of […]

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Ubud Diary : Bali’s Newest Art Gallery Showcasing the Ubud Style

Art In Bali | Jan 27, 2020

A new art gallery and cultural landmark, Ubud Diary, has opened in Lodtunduh – just south of Ubud – presenting a collection predominantly exhibiting paintings of the Ubud style.  Ubud Diary held its grand opening on the 30th of November, 2019, coinciding also with a book launching of ‘Ubud Diary: Celebrating the Ubud School of […]

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Widow Sacfrifices and other Suicides in Bali

Culture | Jan 25, 2020

It is a mistake to think that only bearded men with gleaming eyes seek ‘paradise’ by blowing themselves up in the middle of a crowd. Like it or not, Bali too has its own traditions of horror-inspired paradise seekers. Let us give it a look. Widows’ Sacrifice The most famous of these traditions relates to […]

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Images of Industriouness in Bali’s Batuan Paintings

Art In Bali | Jan 24, 2020

This month’s painting is a very large work on canvas – 200 cm x 125 cm – by Ida Bagus (IB) Putu Padma. The image to the right is just a detail of the entire painting. The artist who created this vibrant canvas is a member of a family of well known painters. His grandfather […]

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The Philosophy of the Barong Dance

Culture | Jan 23, 2020

The Balinese believe that we were born with suka duka lara pati, which means that in life we go through happiness and sadness, and at the end death is absolute. This duality of life is like two sides of a coin, they are inseparable. There is also a strong belief that light will eventually come […]

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Bentara Budaya Bali Cultural Centre: Bridging Traditions with the Now

Art In Bali | Jan 13, 2020

Bali is a unique meeting point between tradition and modernity. One of its distinctions is its fascinating culture that is, however, under increasing pressure from outside influences and the Indonesian nation-state. Sited in Sukawati, on the main link from Denpasar east to the regency of Karangasem BentaraBudaya Bali Cultural Center plays a vital role in […]

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