'Semelah' (God's Bliss), a shadow puppet play by Indonesian visual artist Eko Nugroho at Taman Ismail Marzuki in Jakarta last year. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

Google Helps Wayang Go Digital


MAY 13, 2020

Jakarta. The Education and Culture Ministry is working with the Google Institute and the Jakarta provincial government to digitalize more than 4,000 wayang puppets from the National Wayang Museum's collection.

"As a masterpiece of the oral and intangible heritage of humanity recognized by UNESCO, wayang is more than just an art or a performance. It is a reflective medium that can portray real-life stories and filled with philosophical wisdom," the ministry's director-general of cultural affairs Hilmar Farid said in a statement on Wednesday.

He said wayang is an essential part of Indonesian society that must not only be preserved but also celebrated.

"Thanks to Google Arts and Culture, we can digitally preserve these important pieces of Indonesian heritage and celebrate their unique diversity," Hilmar said.


The public can now access the wayang collection through the Google Arts and Culture platform.

Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan said many things could be done at home today with the help of technology. Through Google Arts and Culture, people can learn about Indonesia's rich cultural heritage in a fun and exciting way.

"We are pleased to be able to introduce one of our cultural heritages from the National Wayang Museum to Google Arts and Culture. The collection will be fully accessible not just in Indonesia, but also the world," Anies said.

Google Indonesia's public policy and government relations manager, Ryan Rahardjo, said Google realizes the importance of preserving cultural heritage as part of a country's identity.

Since October 2017, Google has been adding more content from museums and historical sites in Indonesia to Google Arts and Culture.

"We hope to continue to preserve and celebrate more of Indonesia's cultural heritage and treasures digitally in the future," Ryan said.