In the mid-19th century, Alfred Russel Wallace, a British naturalist, went on scientific exploration where he discovered the largest living laboratory in the world located in the eastern part of today’s Indonesia, now known as the Wallacea region. During his scientific journey in archipelago, from 1854 to 1862, he documented his findings in a book titled “The Malay Archipelago” – a classic story not only of the most ecologically-diverse areas on the planet, but also of diversity in culture, language and people identity in Nusantara. 

In the spirit of “The Malay Archipelago” and Alfred Russel Wallace as the shared UK – Indonesia legacy, British Council organizes an arts and science exhibition to take you through the richness of biodiversity and culture in Wallacea region. The exhibition will be divided into three chapters, just like reading a book, you will learn and experience different emotion and story in each of the chapters. 

Chapter I will take you to explore the life story of Wallace, his adventure with his assistant named Ali to document flora, fauna and culture in archipelago as well as his ideas on evolution and the creation of the Wallace line. This chapter will also allow you to learn about the uniqueness of Wallacea region. 

In the Chapter II, you will learn about Wallacea region today, especially about the challenges that it faces. Because of its capacity as the most ecologically-diverse region in the world, Wallacea region is prone to threat such as deforestation, flora and fauna extinction, illegal animal hunting and many more. However, this Chapter will also take you to learn more about organizations and communities who work tirelessly to preserve the rich heritage of Wallace region and Wallace’s works. 

At the end of this chapter, you can write down your hope and vision on how to preserve Wallacea region and attach your notes to one of our interactive installations. We call them heroes, the people who are inspiration to all of us to keep preserving and exploring the special region of Wallacea. Be inspired and learn more about them in Chapter III

Works that will be exhibited include ‘Nadabumi’ Creative Technology Exhibition by Invisible Flock (UK) x Digital Nativ (UD), Storytelling Exhibition, and ‘Craft as Art’ Exhibition by ‘Meet the Makers’ Community.

‘Nadabumi’ Creative Technology Exhibition by Invisible Flock (UK) x Digital Nativ (ID)

Nada Bumi (Earth Tones) by Invisible Flock (UK) and Digital Nativ (Indonesia) is an interactive sensory environment created from the ecosystems and landscapes of Indonesia collected during a 3000+ mile expedition.

Nada Bumi is an interactive sensory environment, with an invitation to touch and explore the installation in order to affect it.

The installation combines an immense collection of sound, air, biodata and samples from some of the most diverse and extreme landscapes in Indonesia, attempting to capture the data footprint of ecosystems at the forefront of climate change.

Uncovering natural hidden phenomenons; the electrical energy that plants generate, the slow bleaching of corals, the seismic patterns left in lava flow, the work attempts to capture, reimagine and highlight the fragility of these eroding landscapes and challenge our relationship to them.

About Invisible Flock -
About Digital Nativ -

Storytelling Exhibition

23 - 28 November 2019
Nipah Mall
Indigenous Language Poetry Exchange Exhibition


Indigenous Language Poetry Exchange: UK-Indonesia

A collaboration between the British Council, the BBC, and literature festivals in Makassar and Hull to mark 2019, the UNESCO International Year of Indigenous Languages.

This project forms part of the legacy programme of the Indonesia Market Focus at The London Book Fair 2019 delivered by Indonesia’s National Organising Committee under the Creative Economy Agency and the Ministry of Education and Culture. The project is build on the legacy of ‘Unwritten Poems’ and ‘Talking Doorsteps’, both British Council and BBC collaborations which emerged from the 2017 Hull City of Culture. 

Indonesian Poets

  • Irma Agryanti – Lombok
  • Jamil Massa – Gorontalo
  • Mario F. Lawi – Kupang

UK Poets

  • William (Billy) Letford – Scotland
  • Roseanne Watt – Shaetlan Islands
  • Rufus Mufasa - Wales

24 November 2019 
Rumata Artspace
Public Presentation: Weaving Stories - A Work in Progress


This project consists of a residency to visit crafts organisation combined with a storytelling workshop led by both UK and Indonesian practitioner. The aim is to trace back traditional heritage and rebuild a new narration of storytelling. 

Through ‘Weaving Stories’ we would like to empower communities and emerging storytellers to find new forms of storytelling which may be visual, written, or performative. 

Storytelling Workshop
Public Presentation of Ideas 

Woven Heritage: Stories from Wallacea by ‘Meet the Makers’ Community

  • Live tenun-making by several artisans from Sulawesi, Maluku, and NTT
  • Handpainting workshop where everyone can paint on it, and it becomes a "story tapestry"
  • Weavers discussion "Tunas Timur" (New Shoots from the East)