Circus on wheels

Colorful contraptions like this patrol the streets of Jakarta, hoping to attract the wide-eyed children who are drawn to it with awe. As the driver pedals, the ‘vehicles’ rhythmically bounce up and down in tune with the birthday techno music pumping out of the bike’s roof. Street life is never dull in Jakarta. Cipulir, JakartaRead more

Off the Grid

I have broken free of the binding chains that are modern technology. Well, for a few days at least. My handphone: a Sony Ericsson S700i – hasn’t been working properly for 9 months, and I finally decided to fix it. In April of 2005 I decided I wanted a handphone with a decent camera, and the nicest screen I could find. I thought that if I were to stumble upon someone interested in seeing my photographs, I could whip outRead more

Leap of Faith

Taken in a kampung, a small village built on stilts over a swamp in Kelapa Gading, North Jakarta. These children, for the most part, seemed to be enjoying life like any others, despite the abject poverty they’re surrounded with. I love this photo; there’s just so much going on, so many thoughts, so many details. It certainly won’t appeal to everyone, but it represents an important part of Jakarta’s culture, and the vibrance of youth in this nation. It cannotRead more

Life in Perspective

The following is an excerpt from The Jakarta Post. It is not necessarily an uncommon story here in Indonesia: Poverty has led a family to make a home amid silent neighbors — tombstones — just one kilometer west of the country’s international airport. Muhammad Akim Hakim and his wife Erna Octaviana Pasaribu are raising their young children in Tanah Pasir Cemetery, an abandoned Chinese cemetery, near Rawa Kucing area in predominantly poor Neglasari district, as they have no better options.Read more