BY WARWICK PURSER With its giddy variety, competitive prices, and unique motifs and themes, Indonesia is one of the world’s great shopping adventures. Any stroll through the streets of the country’s tourist centers and markets will uncover vast quantities of hand-made products, many of them of questionable design and quality, mass-produced souvenirs, repetitive carvings, momentos and dreary bric-a-brac. Unfortunately, most visitors‚ judgments of Indonesia’s handcrafted products are based on this experience. What is much less known is that Indonesia is home to some of the world’s most talented craftspeople, producing high-quality products that sit on the shelves of the finest shops in the world, including Harrods of London and Marshall Fields in the United States. You’ll find here a broad array of fashionable clothing, inexpensive leather goods, exquisite textiles, and stunning jewelry. The emporiums of the land offer everything from primitive artifacts to sophisticated art produced by palace artisans, colorful contemporary decorative furnishings to priceless antiques. Indonesians seem to have an uncanny ability to create almost anything with their hands. Made in Indonesia: A Tribute to the Country’s Craftspeople by creative entrepreneur and longtime resident Warwick Purser, celebrates the remarkable products manufactured throughout the country and the people who make them. Natural materials such as palm and pandanus fiber, bamboo, shells, as well as recycled materials like newspapers, glass and tin cans are all used in creative ways.
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