Plume: A Film by Michal Gorzynski


This film by Michal Gorzynski demonstrates a tour of Poland’s Gdańsk in the following fashion video of Tulisan’s Plume & Wonder Fall/Winter collection 2014-2015. The video plays with light and shade in a city of trade by the baltic coast, which is home to a central seaport in Poland.

The prominent influence of the Plume & Wonder edition was based on the crossing line between the subversive conscious of our dreams and our projected reality. The film joins the ethereal connection between the self and nature, following the steps of a young woman supporting a Plume Panama Bag in Orange Salmon as she follows the haziness of sunlight, embarking on a discovery through the shifts of emotions captured through the streams of sound and the boundless landscapes.

The video accompanies Indonesian-band Polka War‘s ambient track “Horse Hooves” which will be released in their upcoming album this year.

The Plume Prints Edition will be available in November 2014.    

Film by Michal Gorzynski
Music by Polka Wars

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life, Light, Red, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

ANIMA: Voyage to the Subconscious Mind


ANIMA are Tulisan limited edition playing cards illustrated by myself and a Swiss Canadian Artist, Sébastien Théraulaz. We have been working on this project together through the internet and long distant communications since last December 2013. The four suits correspond to the four classical elements: Air (Hearts), Fire (Spades), Water (Clubs), and Earth (Diamonds). Additionally the deck features two jokers depicted by the artists’ Oracle of the Sacred Catfish and two special Anima cards portrayed by their Supreme Hippocampus.


Time passes through and divides our lives into several facets. My very first sensory of this life was the warm skin of my mother. The very first shape of emotion was her eyes that gave me a blanket of protection. Since then, between reality and dream, I hold a set of cards which unfold both weaknesses and strengths. Every encounter and dialogue with other individuals became a game where we exchange our cards, for the better or for the worse. As I play my game, I discover something new about myself.


We all live in four different dimensions. The first fundamental dimension is an awareness of the corporeal body and its changes.


The second dimension is our dream and our vision. The third dimension is our soul and spirit. The fourth is our mind and how we conquer it.


These dimensions are like chambers of games.


Only the self have the ability occupy the four chambers at all times. A balance person takes full control of these four dimensions.


With most other players, we share at least one dimension. If we are lucky, we would meet another player whom we get to share three chambers. Then at a very rare occasion, we might cross our path with another player who plays the game in the same four dimensions.


The Anima Playing Cards is a project is about facing the truth of our being, confronting the worst of our fears, embracing all imperfections and setting the mind free from any dogmas.

Throughout history playing cards have served a variety of enigmatic purposes. Originally only the front of cards were printed, while the backs were left blank. This free space combined with their petite size made them ideal for use in sending secret love letters and covert messages. Playing cards have also been linked to secret societies as it is believed that the seemingly benign symbolism used for the cards’ suits and values actually relayed hidden messages. This complex and mysterious history adds to the charming allure inherent to a deck of cards. Whether it is through the love of games or secrets, playing cards have been bringing people together ever since their creation hundreds of years ago.

Tripple kisses,

Melissa Sunjaya
Founding Artist

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Store Info | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Presenting the F/W 14 -15: Wonder Prints Edition


Dear Tulisan Friends,

After much anticipation and an exclusive preview of our Fall/Winter collection 2014 – 2015 held last June, we proudly present the official release of our Fall/Winter Collection ‘Wonder’ Edition. 

The textile design are based on a few original pen and ink drawings which are then arranged manually into motifs. For the 2014 prints editions, ‘Wonder’ is an Art Nouveau inspired illustration of a cat fish and its habitat. The October collection will be available in two Wonder Prints Edition color ways: Smokey Lunar and Light Coco on 16 types of bags, organizers, and pouches.

We will be hosting the intimate launch at our boutique in Darmawangsa Square City Walk, Jalan Darmawangsa VI, Ground Floor, next to Ranch Market. This event is opened to the public on Wednesday, 22 October 2014, from 09:00 to 15.00. The artist Melissa Sunjaya will be available for a bag signing.

Come by for an autograph, a quick hello, and sit with us for warm cup of tea!

Warmest wishes, 
Tulisan Team


Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life, Studio, Style | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Spotted: Tulisan on My Spring Days!

Posted on Art, Light, Studio | 1 Comment


Our Smokey Plum Marigold Print Apron and Blue Note Marigold Print Pouch was recently spotted on the South Korean Drama: My Spring Days! Moreover, the wearer of the apron and bearer of the pouch is none other than the beautiful Choi Soo-Young, the favored actress and singer of the girl group band, Girls Generations!

A beautiful print on a beautiful actress in the land of Kimchi’s! Our week is complete!

WP_JOU161014_KS02 WP_JOU161014_KS03

Image courtesy of

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Light, Studio | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Namarina Youth Dance Evaluation


In the dance film Vers Mathilde we are brought into the life of movement following the routine of modern dance choreographer Mathilde Monnier. With minimal dialogue, each dance movement is deconstructed to show the intensity of repetition and dedication one goes through in interpreting one of the most meticulous art forms.



This is a glimpse of what we saw during the Namarina Youth Dance Evaluation. As the groups prepared for the upcoming Hotel Batavia performance – a special collaboration between Tulisan and Namarina Dance Academy – Melissa, Michál, and I witnessed the three dance groups who performed in front us showcasing their ability to increase their agility and quality of movement based on the practice which undertones the complexity of speed, transfer of weight, and strength.


Dance such as ballet requires the ability to push the body to its limits, as each group was evaluated by the number of judges in the dance studio, we understood the seriousness these dancers has to master to complement their body to sound,  body contour to expression, and the ability to master emotions over technique.


Established in the year 2006, Namarina Youth Dance under the precedent 1956′s Namarina Dance Academy takes on its roots of classical ballet while fusing the traditional culture to showcase the young talents in Indonesia and place their dance ability to the map of the world.

The audition was divided into two segments first being the ballet group audition, where  the groups of dancers has to amplify various dance techniques as Plies, Tendu & Glisses, Grand Battement, to Pirouette in Attitude before showcasing to us their ability to preform dance variations.


The second part was the jazz dance. A range of dance Jazz routines with the intention to warm up the major muscles group of upper and lower part of the body as well as evaluate the dance technique, dance performance, and musicality of each dancers.


Each dance group’ movement was evaluated by the Artistic Directors and observed by the number of choreographers, musician and NYD’s Board of Advisors to ensure their dedicated efforts are translated into the technique and tempo of music they are able to portray.


As once stated by the late ballet dancer and choreographer Rudolf Nureyev “Technique is what you fall back to when you run out of inspiration,” and the Namarina Youth Dance (NYD) group has proven that mastering the versatility in technique can push for a soul-enriching performance.

We look forward for the upcoming Hotel Batavia performance coming up this November 28 and 29, 2014. 




Tickets can be purchased at:

Namarina Pusat (@_Namarina)
Jl. Halimun No. 43, Jakarta 12980
+62-21- 829 4777, 829 4778

Namarina Kebayoran
Jl. Gandaria Tengah III No.9
+61-21-739 8557

Gedung Kesenian Jakarta
Jl. Gedung Kesenian No.1
Jakarta Pusat 10710
+62-21 380 8283, 344 1892

Text by Athina Ibrahim
Photography by Michál Gorzynski & Athina Ibrahim

Leave a Comment
Posted in Grey, Life, Light, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Discover Events This Week!

Posted on Art, Life, Travel | No Comments


#TerimakasihVeteran | Tuesday, October 7 2014

In the event of supporting the nationalistic and patriotism in oneself, the event #terimakasihveteran (thank you, veteran) will be held to trace back history. In the year 1940, the number of veteran has fought colonialism to preserve Indonesia’s Independence. But what do they get out of it now? This event is established as a form of gratitude for the veterans who are almost forgotten by the government.


Kelompok Penerbang Rocket
Melanie Subono
Anda Perdana
Uda Sjam

Fundrasing project for veterans.

Level II
The Foundry


BAND PERFORMANCE: Jirapah | Saturday, October 11 2014

In welcoming the Salihara Festival, a number of young and energetic bands will be preforming in complementing for the larger and main performances during the event. Each will bring their own style and centre to give for a memorable performance.

Taman Serambi
Jl.Salihara No.16.,
Pasar Minggu

For more information:


Be Your Self | Saturday, October 2014

Be Your Self (2010) is a choreography that takes the human’s body and the meaning of being a human back to the stage. This performance fuses different narratives: Buddhism philosophy, feminism discourse, and medical text. The movements of the dancers are designed to be highly athletic, sophisticated, and dangerous.

Australian Dance Theatre (ADT) is a contemporary dance company based in Adelaide. This company was established by Dr. Elizabeth Cameron Dalman in 1965. Garry Stewart has been working as ADT’s artistic director since 1999. This company has been consistently presenting provocative contemporary issues with progressive dance movements.

ADT has successfully won 28 awards; to name a couple are the Green Room Awards (2014) and Australian Dance Award (2013).

Teater Serambi
Jl.Salihara No.16.,
Pasar Minggu

For more information:

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Discover: Events This Week!

Posted on Art, Grey, Travel | No Comments


Puppetry Workshop by Papermoon Puppet Theatre | Wednesday, October 1, 2014 

Hailing from Yogyakarta, Papermoon Puppet Theatre have presented their whimsical puppets and experimental puppetry in performances and exhibitions across the globe. Get behind the scenes and try your hand at making your own puppet. Work with tools, rattan, bamboo, paper, glue, and screws to make your own little creatures and bring them to life!

Jalan Kemang Selatan Raya,
Kota Jakarta Selatan,
DKI Jakarta 12730,

For more information:


Revolution | Thursday, October 2 2014 

In Revolution (first performed in 2009), 12 performers will be dancing by rotating clockwise on iron poles in various movements. This work is the first part of a trilogy, alongside Rouge (2011), and Tragédie (2012).

Olivier Dubois is the vanguard choreographer and performer in France. Other than creating dance choreographies, he also performs in several choreographies and performances directed by prominent directors. Olivier also gives dance workshops in several dance academies and international dance companies. He formed Compagnie Olivier Dubois in 2007. In the same year, he also received an award from a number of French art critics for his work Pour tout l’or du monde. This work was awarded first prize exaequo of Jardin d’Europe in 2008.

Teater Salihara
Jl.Salihara No.16.,
Pasar Minggu

For more information:

Exhibition “Stille Passanten” | September 20 – November 15, 2014 

Did you know that in the last century more than 30,000 Javanese people emigrated to Suriname? Do you want to know more about their migration?

You are welcome on Saturday 20 September at 4.00 p.m. at the Erasmus House where the exhibition ‘Stille Passanten’ about Surinamese Javanese migration will be opened. You will learn more about a piece of forgotten history with unique photographs, books and other documentation.

Eramus Huis
Jl. H.R. Rasuna Said kav. S-3,
Jakarta, Indonesia 12950

For more information:

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Grey, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Gift Essential for Libra

Posted on Blue, Light, Style | No Comments


Our hearty Librarians are known to have an eye for balance. Born in the month of September 23 to October 22, they are known to be delicate beings who enjoy the comforts of life if set in a beautiful package. Last year we recommended the selected Tulisan Hampers, since Libra’s are known to be heavy weighers of decisions, they would appreciate a good friend who knows what to get them instead.

We recommend going for the Tulisan Gallery Tote to quench the Libra’s thirst for all things aesthetically pleasing. They can spend their days exploring a nearby gallery and art space with their lofty interior which can keep their daily necessities in tact. Opt for their birthstone color opal or alternative sapphire color to make them


Text by Athina Ibrahim


Leave a Comment
Posted in Blue, Light, Style | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Discover Events This Week!

Posted on Art, Light, Travel | No Comments


Arthouse Cinema: Postcard from the Zoo | Tuesday, 23 September 2013

Raised by instructors in the zoo, the zoo has become the world known best by Lana. She learned to take steps as elegantly as the hippo and the giraffes and followed the beautiful way the elephants move their flap of ears . As time goes by, Lana did not care who her father was.

Jalan Sam Ratulangi No. 9-15
Menteng, Jakarta Pusat

For more information:


Coefficient of Expansion | Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Galeri Nasional Indonesia will be hosting the 3rd Jakarta Contemporary Ceramics  Biennale with the theme “Coefficient of Expansion.” 

Curated by
Asmudjo Jono Irianto
Rifky Effendy

Galeri Nasional Indonesia
Jl. Medan Merdeka Timur no.14.

For more information:

Circuit Speak Percussion | Thursday, 25 September 2014

Speak Percussion creates a surreal world of music with different electronic and musical equipments,played in an innovative style. In Circuit, they will perform four contemporary percussion pieces; from three Australian composers and one Danish composer.
Speak Percussion is a group of percussion players based in Australia that has been performing for more than 13 years. Speak Percussion collaborates with multidisciplinary artists and explores a number of fields: percussion, architecture, gastronomy, installation, building instruments, astronomy and dance.
This percussion group has won several art awards, including the Melbourne Fringe Festival Best Music Award (2012).

Speak Percussion will also do a workshop on how to play percussion music on Wednesday, September 24, 2014, 08:00 PM.

Galeri Salihara
Jl.Salihara No.16.
Pasar Minggu

For more information:

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Light, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Kaki Lima: To Market, To Market

GAB-20140731-724-Edit  Preface 

KAKI LIMA: (Kaki = Feet/Leg; Lima = Five) In literal translation, Kaki Lima means five feet. In Jakarta, the term is often used to describe the ubiquitous street vendors who willingly push their three-legged cart with their strong two feet. With Tulisan, we take you to stroll and commute with us to the streets of the capital, to immerse in your senses and pay attention to the sight, sound, and scent beyond the cityscapes.

Kaki Lima: To Market, To Market

“To market, to market, to buy a plum bun,” was her favorite nursery rhyme growing up. As her mother went to buy her daily supplies of fruits and vegetables, she became accustomed to the aroma of home cooked meals and her mother spending the day churning up her favorite banoffee pie. 

Although juggling a cramped schedule occasionally calls for the convenience of supermarkets, she stills enjoy the prime luxury of knowing what goes into her meal. The ripeness of apples, the tenderness of poultry, and the dash of herbs chosen to her own preference. 

While it is easy to indulge in instant gratification, she enjoys the downshift of simplicity, taking the ra-ta-ta of bright orange bajaj, slightly slower than the average motorcycles and cars but always reminding her to slow down and surrender to the unknown alleys filled with the traditional ideals of living. 

GAB-20140731-627-Edit-Edit GAB-20140731-597-Edit






Text by Athina Ibrahim
Photography by Gabriela Bhaskar

Tulisan’s Cruise Bag and Toy Box
Top by Proklamasi
Dilyana from Amore Models Jakarta 

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life, Orange, Studio, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Discover Events This Week!


Inside the Apple | September 15 – 16, 2014

Inside the Apple is Kateřina “KATT” Chroboková’s first album. KATT writes her own songs, a mixture of electronic organ and modern trend with a taste of electro-pop. KATT will play different works in her two nights concert.

KATT was born and raised in the industrial area of the northeast part of Czech Republic. She started her international career after she won the Oundle International Organ Festival in England. Since that, she regularly performs in different festivals along with prestigious orchestras in Czech Republic, Europe, and Mexico. Her study abroad has also helped her to get intimate with different genres of music. KATT is currently undertaking her doctoral program at the Janáček Academy of Music and Performing Arts, Brno, and at the Technologies des Arts, Paris.

Teater Salihara
Jl.Salihara No.16.,
Pasar Minggu

For more information:


Localfest | September 18 – 21, 2014 is a festival created to bring out the greatest of local potentials within the younger generation of Indonesia within the compounds of, from creative talent to local fashion brands.

Grand Indonesia Hall Lt. 5
Jln. MH.Thamrin No.1,
Jakarta Pusat

For more information:


Sea of Ancestor | September 19, 2014

The author and photographer Beat Presser presents his story of the Dhows (traditional boat) along the East African Coast and Pinisi in Indonesia.

The exhibition will showcase 79 pictures not just about the traditional boat but also celebrates the spirit of the seaman from East African coast and the well-known Bugis tribe. His view also extend to culture, landscape and history of the maritime traditions.
Beat Presser lived and worked in Madagascar from 1988-1992 and later continued in 2009-2010 along the East African Coast. Now he looks into ships, trade and travels in the Indonesian Archipelago.

Galeri Foto Jurnalistik Antara
Jl. Antara no. 59,
Pasar Baru,
Jakarta 10710

For more information:

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Studio, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Man Who Knew Too Much

Posted on Art, Grey, Life, Studio | No Comments


A solidly built man, about six feet in height, who looks like a good weighted sailor – broad-chested, ample arms, but slightly thin in the legs. Often dressing casually in a plain gray tee, cropped pants and flip-flops or Spanish espadrilles, as if he is always ready for an adventure under the scorching sun.

He may not be a sailor, but having come from a place where shipyards and sailboats is a cultural norm, he has long been interested in the essential purity of being caressed against the wind and sea.

His tone of voice implies firmness occasionally with an air of affliction arising as he talks about the distant familiarity of the place he is currently discovering as he focuses on a design project with Tulisan. He moves to countries out of curiosity and has spent his greatest attention for structure and the moving images.

Here was a man of many interests and a desire to explore the untouchable grounds of the East.

I spent 20-minutes of my time with Michal Gorzynski.


So you are into Yachts Design?

I come from the Northern part of Poland and we have long traditions of Ship yards there. So my interest grew from there. The studio where I studied Yachts design was the only one in Poland. I had a choice to go for furniture, fashion, visual design, and Yachts, so I went for the latter, even though I am not a sailor myself, I can appreciate the concept and purity of the sailboat and the fact it is propelled by the wind. In fact, I worked in a couple of companies and ended up working on various luxurious boats.

I worked on the exterior of the boats, it is somewhere between product and architecture because of the scale of it, but I needed a break and going back for something which is more functional and mass-produced. I find it more fun to have a number of people enjoying my design rather than focus on a client with specific needs.

I felt like going back to product design, projects where you design for specific clients.


I am amazed at how you can juggle a lot on your plate.

After focusing in product design, I actually went to film school for four years and did animations and movies. Finally did Yachts then moved to Holland, and worked for a really well known design office that worked on shipyards and luxury boats. I then had this idea to move to London, to spend a few months in London, interviewing a few companies, I approached Dominic again, just to ask for references, he was happy to hear from me, but Melissa at the time, was really looking for someone to join the team.


From designing big heavy boats to making attractive bags – why the change?

It happened naturally for me. I could easily move from one media to the next, and I do not see a problem there. With experience you realize these is different industries but the approach is always the same. It requires the same kind of sensitivity.

This mix-medium helps in influencing the design process, I think it is helpful, it gives you a broader view, I get inspired by different fields, whether architecture or interior design.


How different was it working on a project with Tulisan?

Compared to my experience back in working in LA it was a consulting firm. Here, Tulisan is Melissa’s own product, there is much more to consider because you are responsible for all the decisions. We are quite picky to get things right.

As a team, all of us had a western background and working for western companies, so the process was very much the same, and I was already familiar with it.

But from what I heard, when you are looking for new members for the design team it is difficult to find people here who has the same minimalistic approach, you see Jakarta and it is a really busy environment, there are so much stuff and it is really cramped, people are not used to making things simpler. It is difficult to find people with the same mentality.


Melissa has a playful character of wanting to infuse the rich character of the city. What aspects of minimalism are you implying?

The minimalistic approach can be seen in the product design side of the bag. Designing a bag is like origami, when you look at the cutting pattern it is so clean and every surface is used then she doesn’t want to add to many details and she keeps it simple. The patterns stands on its own, but if you see the bag as a canvas.

We now introduce various stylish bags which highlights the shape of the bag, but they are still kind of simple and basic, you don’t have additional details. Keep the product as simple as possible, the patterns gives character it itself, other than that the product is simple and clean.

Designing a product requires a lot of restrain from the designer, when I start a project I like to set the limits, if you are free to do whatever you can you cannot do anything.


When do you know when to stop and be proud of what you have made?

There is actually two sides to that coins, sometimes you overdo things, sometimes you sketch and it is not finished and you are dreaming of it and you start overdoing it. And then, you see the final product and you still want to change. But we are lucky to have the opportunity to change if for the final collection. So we have this batch of eight, we introduce it with a special lining for this and the prints are handmade. Even though, we would always want to change something, the base of the product is already great and we think the clients would be very happy to get it in this form.

You know designers are very picky, quite often sometimes the users do not see the details that you see.


Happy birthday and welcome to the newest member of Asta Design Consultancy Group, Michal!

Text by Athina Ibrahim
Photography by Melissa Sunjaya

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Grey, Life, Studio | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Kaki Lima: Cycling Through Time



KAKI LIMA: (Kaki = Feet/Leg; Lima = Five) In literal translation, Kaki Lima means five feet. In Jakarta, the term is often used to describe the ubiquitous street vendors who willingly push their three-legged cart with their strong two feet. With Tulisan, we take you to stroll and commute with us to the streets of the capital, to immerse in your senses and pay attention to the sight, sound, and scent beyond the cityscapes.

Kaki Lima: Cycling Through Time 

At an old post office sits a man, coarse yellowish skin who looks stiff and beaten. His existence tells the story of love and lost, of the unconditional and the forbidden. A symbol of defeat retold through a Javanese folktale about a man who fell in love with his lost mom.

This man is found at the old town, a place breathing of nostalgia. Each wall corrodes and has become an ear to the changes of time. Passing tales about triumph and foreign possession, where each windowpane has opened the doors of the forgotten.

Today, the hands of the contemporary has sought its worth and bridged her with her ancestors. She cycles her way around the town square, noticing the jolt of kids’ laughter enjoying each second of running freely. While the visible has been altered, sound  remains her strongest emotional link to the space which has recollected the coming of age and a time of becoming. She cycles her way back to the future.











Text by Athina Ibrahim
Photography by Gabriela Bhaskar

Bag Tulisan’s Marigold Knit Liliput Tote
Dilyana from Amore Models Jakarta 

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life, Style, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Discover Events This Week!

Posted on Art, Life, Travel | No Comments


A JAZZ LIFE | Wednesday, 10 September 2014 

The Salamander Big Band, a Jazz ensemble of 30 young musicians from Bandung, was founded in 2006 and has ever since rehearsed and established a very high level of performances in the Indonesian Jazz scene, with concerts usually completely booked out. The Goethe-Institut regularly invites experienced Jazz musicians to help those dedicated young musicians develop their skills in the Big Band Clinic. For the band’s 8th anniversary, we are very glad to welcome Ack van Rooyen, a Big Band expert for three fantastic concerts in Bandung and Jakarta.

Erasmus Huis Jakarta 
Jl HR Rasuna Said Kav S-3, Setiabudi,
Jakarta Selatan

For more information:


BAND Performance: SORE | Saturday, 13 September 2014

In welcoming the Salihara Festival, a number of young and energetic bands will be preforming in complementing for the larger and main performances during the event. Each will bring their own style and centre to give for a memorable performance.

Taman Serambi 
Jl.Salihara No.16.,
Pasar Minggu

For more information:


Magical Mystery Tour | Saturday & Sunday, 13 – 14 September 2014

Animé String Orchestra will perform a number of musical works by the Beatles, Jimi Hendrix and Emerson, Lake & Palmer (ELP), which are re-arranged and played with string instruments.

Animé String Orchestra was founded by Haryo “Yose” Soejoto in 2001.  As a life performance ensemble they are characterized by the absence of a conventional audio system which appreciates acoustic musical instruments played. Haryo “Yose” Soejoto studied music at the Academy of Music Indonesia (AMI), the Jakarta Institute of Arts Education (LPKJ, now IKJ), Wellington Polytechnic, New Zealand, and atthe ISI. Some compositions are “Music for Trombone 12 (1998),” Anticipation for Computers and Percussion “(1998),” Lava to 3 Marimba “(1997) and” Homage for John Cage “(1991).

Teater Salihara
JL. Salihara 16,
Pasar Minggu,
Jakarta Selatan

For more information:

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Bibliofiles: The Snow Leopard

Posted on Art, Life | 1 Comment

BIbliofiles: The Snow Leopard

Modern life is brimming with comforts and conveniences that decades ago only existed in the realm of science fiction. Times have certainly and irrevocably changed.  But strip away the façade we craft with social media, and the busyness that has become so normal, and what would we find?

Such is the journey Peter Matthiessen undertakes in his book The Snow Leopard. Though published in 1978, Matthiessen’s quest to escape the trappings of modernity to better understand himself is a theme that still feels relevant today. Along with field biologist George Schaller and a team of Sherpas and porters, Matthiessen travels for two months in Nepal to study the Himalayan blue sheep and hopefully lay eyes upon the rare snow leopard.

For Schaller the trip is purely an academic pursuit, but for Matthiessen (a student of Zen Buddhism who lost his wife to cancer the year before) the expedition is a spiritual mission. Matthiessen articulates what he observes with such seamless detail that I finished his book feeling like I had seen the snowy mountain peaks and persevering villagers for myself.

BIbliofiles: The Snow Leopard

As Matthiessen navigates the peaks and valleys of the mountains, so too does he meander through an emotional landscape with highs and lows all its own. Some (including myself) may wonder how the author could leave behind his 8 year old son who so recently lost his mother in order to undertake a treacherous journey–a question that looms every time danger emerges. But it seems that part of Matthiessen’s nature is a sort of restless discontent that compels him to forever seek an inner peace, which remains ever so slightly just out of reach.

BIbliofiles: The Snow Leopard

Using the trip as both an escape from and a means to understand his life and circumstances, Matthiessen grapples with his yearning to find Zen balance, which is often at odds with his disposition. It’s a topic that is relatable even when Matthiessen is unlikable. The author is at times self-absorbed and moody, but in revealing every nuance of his character, his book becomes that much more honest, real, and in the end, meaningful. When the final word on the final page has been read, the insight gleaned from the pages feels authentic and profound.

How far would you go to find inner peace? How much pleasure would you be willing to sacrifice to find contentment? And in the end, having surrendered so much, if you didn’t find what you were looking for, would the journey have still been worthwhile? The answer is of course deeply personal, and just such a reply is rendered in The Snow Leopard.

~Melany Zwartjes

Leave a Comment
Posted in Art, Life | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment