From 29 October to 8 November, KEMBALI2020 : A Rebuild Festival seeks to inspire young and emerging writers through showcasing an array of panellists. Join compelling authors, journalists and other creatives as they discuss topics that range from writing during a time of crisis to the importance of stories and arts for peacebuilding. Here are 17 sessions, from the Main Program, Music & Arts, and Workshops at KEMBALI20, which aspire to excite young creatives.
Independent investigative journalist, Febriana Firdaus, is a regular contributor to The Guardian, covering topics from COVID-19 to the Black Lives Matter movement in West Papua. Her works have appeared in Time Magazine, Al Jazeera, Financial Times, among others. She writes about social injustice, Indigenous communities, and stories of women across Indonesia. Join her for an incisive conversation about Indonesia’s fraught media landscape.
People around the world have lost the ability to travel due to border closures and grounded airlines. For those who make a living from sharing their travel experiences, what has the global halt of travel meant both personally and professionally? Join one of Indonesia’s most celebrated travel writers to find out.
Dee Lestari is one of Indonesia’s most popular authors in modern literature. Join her for an insightful discussion about the research process behind her latest book, Aroma Karsa, which even saw her visiting a rubbish dump for ideas and inspiration. Hear from Dee about the importance of deep research for fiction writing, and learn practical tips to get started.
Eka Kurniawan is Indonesia’s most internationally renowned author since Pramoedya Ananta Toer. His Booker Prize-nominated 2016 novel Beauty is a Wound has been translated into 34 languages, while two of his other titles have also been published in several languages. Eka made headlines last year after refusing to accept an award from Indonesia’s Culture and Education Ministry. Join him for an expansive discussion about Indonesia’s literary landscape.
The works of three compelling Western Australian writers, Elizabeth Tan, Yuot Alaak, and Sophie McNeill, span memoir, fiction, and journalism. Join them in conversation with Writing WA’s Gillian O’Shaughnessy to consider the ways in which writing and stories can provide meaning, comfort, and clarity in times of crisis.
Born in North Mollo, East Nusa Tenggara, Dicky Senda is a novelist and food activist. In 2016, he founded Lakoat Kujawas, an integrated art, library, co-working space and homestay in his home village of Taiftob. Join him to explore how celebrating local food and hosting food and literature-themed cultural events for children has empowered his community.
Meet the men who made Bali romantic. Wayan Jengki Sunarta weaves poetic works of art; Tan Lioe Ie is the first poet in Indonesia to use symbolic Chinese images in his poetry; and Warih Wisatsana from West Java made Bali his home after his first poems were published in the Bali Post. Explore the island through their creative minds.
Laksmi Pamuntjak’s latest novel, Fall Baby (Kekasih Musim Gugur) is the winner of Best Literary Work at the Singapore Book Awards 2020. It is the sequel to her debut novel, Amba/The Question of Red and tells the story of Srikandi, the cosmopolitan visual artist daughter of Amba and Bhisma, and Dara, a political activist. It is set against the backdrop of the struggle between the fluidity and displacement of the international contemporary art scene and forces of censorship and intolerance in Indonesia. Join Laksmi as she reads from her latest work.
Citizen journalism in Bali has never been stronger. The community-based journalism portals Bale Bengong and Tatkala provide a platform for local writers to discuss a vast range of topics, including current affairs, politics, art, and culture. In this age of fake news, credible voices and expert opinions are vital. Meet some of the leaders of Bali’s thriving citizen journalism scene.
Art provides us with hope and guidance during a crisis. It enables us to explore what it means to be human, and to unite people and ideas. But COVID-19 has meant that artists across the world are restricted from physically sharing their work, and often from earning a living. Hear from these Balinese artists about how the pandemic has impacted and inspired their practice.
It’s natural to feel unmotivated and distracted during a crisis; it’s natural to have great difficulty focusing. But for some creatives, COVID-19 has provided new sources of inspiration and ideas, and perhaps even a renewed passion for their craft. Join some of the island’s most prolific writers and creatives to learn how their work has been impacted by these strange and challenging times.
Named one of Australia’s finest writers of this generation, Kate Forsyth is inspired by classic fairytales and folklore, and retells them from a feminist perspective. Join Kate in a conversation about childhood tales, their origins and cultural modifications, and why certain voices have been silenced over time. Why do fairytales exist and how important is it for cultures to recreate them in today’s world?
What does Bali look like through the eyes of some of its most promising young writers? As one of the world’s top travel destinations, countless words have been written about the island by foreign writers, but it’s still rare to hear the perspectives of Balinese writers themselves, especially younger authors. Explore Bali’s literature scene and unique local perspectives with these talented young voices.
Maya Soetoro-Ng is a Consultant for the Obama Foundation’s Girls Opportunity Alliance and Leaders: Asia Pacific Program. A former Director of the Matsunaga Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, she is also a children’s book and young adult fiction author. Join her for a powerful conversation about the importance of stories and arts for peacebuilding.
One of Indonesia’s leading stand-up comedians, Sakdiyah Ma’ruf, will teach you how to find your voice through writing stand-up comedy, make an impact, trigger conversation, and inspire change through performance. You’ll learn how to make challenging, taboo, and sensitive topics into ones worthy of discussion. If you’re interested in comedy that unites people and creates impact, this workshop is for you.
Many Balinese have remarked that increased time at home due to health protocols has resulted in a renewed focus on traditions and culture, with Balinese language being one of them. Meet a group of language experts who are working hard to popularize Balinese among the island’s younger generation through new and exciting ways.
Join legendary Balinese storyteller and folklorist Made Taro along with his son Gede Tarmada for an afternoon of classic Balinese fairytales. Not only for children, these stories will enchant anyone interested in Balinese culture.
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