Solo, C. Java (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo (Jokowi) marked National Batik Day by leading a function, themed "Making batik for the country," at the Mangkunegaran Palace, Solo, on Wednesday, featuring the participation of 500 batik makers, including students.

Jokowi was accompanied by First Lady Iriana, with both opting to wear batik clothing for the event.

The Indonesian Batik Foundation (YBI) organized the function to celebrate the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization’s (UNESCO’s) recognition of batik as a world cultural heritage from Indonesia. Since 2009, Indonesia has, on an annual basis, observed October 2 as National Batik Day.

Jultin Ginandjar Kartasasmita, the YBI chairperson, highlighted batik as an asset of Indonesia, emphasizing that the yearly commemoration of National Batik Day aimed at helping to preserve and promote batik as well as boost the country's batik industry.

On the occasion, the foundation launched a book and e-book on batik. The book, equipped with augmented reality technology, facilitates readers in engaging in interactive activity while parsing through it.

A talk show on batik, fashion show, culinary bazaar, and the people's batik market enlivened the celebrations of National Batik Day.

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Indonesia’s batik was inscribed on UNESCO’s Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity at a meeting in the United Arab Emirates on September 30, 2009.

UNESCO’s list describes Indonesian Batik as: The techniques, symbolism, and culture surrounding hand-dyed cotton and silk garments, known as Indonesian batik, permeate the lives of Indonesians from beginning to end: infants are carried in batik slings decorated with symbols designed to bring the child luck, and the dead are shrouded in funerary batik. The wide range of colors, designs, and materials has always made batik popular among the young and old. All Indonesians are proud of and love wearing batik clothes.

In its endeavors to further promoting batik among the younger generations, the government is encouraging the youth to become batik artists, designers, and craftsmen.

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Translator: Hanni Sofia, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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