One of the most popular overseas resorts for Japanese people is undoubtedly Bali. Garuda Indonesia has regular flights five times a week, and many Japanese people visit Bali. It is expected that more Japanese will visit Bali this year now that the COVID-19 pandemic is calming down.
Indonesian Ambassador to Japan Heri Ahmadi invites not only the diplomatic corps but also locals to enjoy cherry blossom viewing every year when they are in full bloom. However, this year, with the COVID-19 pandemic, we decided to introduce the culture of Bali. This is also influenced by the fact that this year marks the 65th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Indonesia and Japan. In this memorable year, many events are being held in both countries under the theme of “One Heart.” On April 3, with the full cooperation of the Indonesian ambassador to Japan and his wife, a large-scale event, titled “The Tale of Wastra,” was held at the official residence of the Indonesian ambassador.
Governor of Bali Wayang Koster and Mrs. Putri Suastini Koster, Chairman of Bali Declanasda, visited Japan for this event. In addition, the Director of Industry and Trade, the Regional National Handicrafts Council (Dekranasda), the Indonesian representative office of Bank Nugroho, Bali, fashion designers, fashion models, and artists from Bali also visited Japan. The event was also sponsored by a number of companies, ministries and agencies such as Bank Indonesia, Bali Regional Development Bank, Perumuda, and others based in Bali.
The event, titled “The Tale of Wastra,” also showcased a variety of Balinese handicrafts, and featured wedding dress fashion shows from around the island as well as fashion shows by contemporary designers. This “The Tale of Wastra” was held in France previously, and its elegant and luxurious production and Balinese culture were deeply moving and appreciated by the French. In addition, Christian Dior, one of France’s leading Couture Maison, was impressed by ENDEK, a textile from Bali, and used it in its 2021 collection.
The April 3 event was attended by a large number of diplomatic corps, media, and travel officials. The graceful movements of the models in their gorgeous wedding dresses were very impressive. In the following fashion show by contemporary designers, models introduced many works to the music of a recorder played by an artist who could be called a Balinese bard. Each piece was unique: one piece was reminiscent of traditional Balinese clothing, and another seemed to symbolize a new era in Bali.
The Indonesian ambassador and his wife often use the ambassador’s official residence to hold events to experience their culture and the multifaceted character of Indonesia. We thank the Ambassador and his wife for this wonderful opportunity.