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    Terracotta, New Gems of Majalengka Clay Crafters


    MAJALENGKA REGENCY - The Jatiwangi precarious industry of Majalengka Regency once triumphed in mid 1990s to 2000. However, the presence of more practical similar products, such as asbestos and spandex tiles, made the prestige of the Jatiwangi precarious industry decline.

    The Jatiwangi precarious industry was spearheaded by H. Umar Bin Ma'ruf for the roof of the mosque in Cikarokrok Hamlet, Majalengka Regency, in 1905. From there, the precarious Jatiwangi continued to climb, even becoming a souvenir and an important part of the development of cities in Indonesia.

    "Jatiwangi Majalengka has a long history in which its culture maximizes God's grace, which is clay. In its journey this becomes an identity and cannot change," said West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil while giving a speech at the Indonesia Contemporary Ceramics Biennale (ICCB) at Jebor Hall, Jatiwangi Art Factory, Thursday (6/27/2019).

    Emil - as Ridwan Kamil was called - said that the Jatiwangi craftsmen must innovate to make products from clay. He called Terakota in response to the sluggish precarious industry. Terracotta, he continued, is of artistic value and can increase the added value of using clay.

    If a business actor is serious about wanting to innovate by producing terracotta, said Emil, Jatiwangi artisans can be victorious again. West Java Provincial Government (Pemdaprov) is ready to push by seeking opportunities for cooperation with various parties so that Terakota Jatiwangi soars.

    "The culture of the land must not change, but the product must be adaptable," he said.

    Terracotta or ceramic products with clay materials, including its use for surface forms that support building construction in an architectural design.

    Like gems that need to be rubbed, Emil views terracotta as a potential commodity both in art and economics. So, he invited the clay craftsmen and elements of the Majalengka Regency Government to return to explore the terracotta design that is responsive to the environment, the needs, and the progress of the times.

    "Majalengka is a hidden gem, the more my jellyfish are, the more I love," he said.

    "So I entrusted to the Majalengka Regency Government to transform the precarious industry players, into non-precarious terracotta, as well as other kinds," he said.

    Emil gave Majalengka Regency six months to make a Terracotta window. So, later entrepreneurs or enthusiasts of terracotta can choose the model, shape, and function of the terracotta needed at the same time in demand.

    "Ideas, innovative ideas are expected to bring prosperity to the artisans," he concluded.

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