On 22nd May 2014 and after 11 days of touring around Java, Traveling Projector headed to Solo. There, we were warmly welcomed by Blontank Poer, the founder of Indonesia Blogger Home community. The screening that night was opened by a Keroncong music performance, which was very interesting because the genre is often considered as ‘something for old folks’, but in this community it was played by young people.
The theme of this screening was pluralism, showing short films from a video competition organized by EngageMedia in 2012 titled ‘Bhinekka Tinggal Duka?’. The films began with one made by Acong, a teenager in Cilacap who talks about his life as a Chinese Muslim. It was followed by four other short films, namely, Paraliyan, Uniforms Don’t Protect Diversity, Papua Calling, and One Day with a Happy Couple.
We closed with a film titled ‘Black Umbrella’, which portrays the stories of two women who demand their rights; The first for her land and the second for justice for her son who was killed in the 1998 Reformation struggle.
More people turned up as the night went on as people usually hang out at the venue until very late at night. Sipping warm ginger drinks and tea, the audience who were mostly young people participated actively in the discussion afterwards.
One attendee asked about the result of the action performed by Mrs. Sumarsih in The Black Umbrella film, whether there was a response from the Government or not. EngageMedia’s Dhyta Chaturani, who is an activist from the ’98 Reformation movement explained that the 224 actions have not been responsed to and that Mrs. Sumarsih together with other activists will continue to act every week until their demands are fulfilled. According to a more senior viewer who was present, these short documentary films are inspiration for young people to gain solidarity and try to make social change.