Rumah Tangga projects…

November 8, 2019: Halloween Highlights!

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September 18, 2019: A big thank you to some friends who recently gifted us these plants! …

We received this vining indigo from our friend Gelar Taufiq in Bandung. Mas Gelar is a DIY expert about all varieties of indigo, its uses, and its connection to the history of Indonesia and Indonesian languages. Eventually we hope to grow enough around the house to try making dye in a workshop with Gelar.

…some native Indonesian hardwood trees we received from Dennis at Taman Kanya in Jakarta. Dennis is also a DIY plant expert, gathering species from all around the archipelago and experimenting with their uses from cooking to medicine, soap, lotion, and even biofuels.

…And last but not least, this beautiful Bodhi Tree, gifted to us by Jakarta artist, Monica Hapsari. Just recently we were talking about wanting a fig tree, but certainly this Tree of Hearts is of the most special variety we could have hoped for. Funny that we had been trying to pick up some free trees from Kantor KTP, but for various reasons were unable to. Looking forward to finding the right spot on the land for these trees, all of which (especially the Bodhi) will one day be quite huge, providing shade, food, and habitat.

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September 6, 2018: Love this girl! Happy Birthday Yuki!

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August 22, 2019: Apparently this land was made to grow watermelon. The seeds we planted in early July have been spreading like crazy and pushing out blooms and these cute little melons which are maturing quite quickly!

(little update here in mid-September… looks like that tiny watermelon is getting a bit um, “out of hand” . . . hehehehehe . . .

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June 4, 2019: Two of the craftsmen who helped build Rumah Tangga, Mas Sajidin and Mas Warsono, made these miniature homes from scrap materials in their free time. Sajidin used colorful tape, foil, and cigarette packs collected from their crew. Warsono made his (and many other items) from the ample scrap wood. Mas Warsono was fond of making small things and leaving them somewhere for us to discover. These houses are definitely some of our favorite (unsolicited) contributions to our home museum!

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April 3, 2019: To commemorate Nanda’s performance of A Line: Inspired by Richard Long, we have planted a row of sunflowers along the traces of his walk. They are considered a “mammoth” variety of sunflowers, growing nearly 3 meters in height. Each flower has a generous sized seed head and the row ought to produce many hundreds of edible seeds.

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February 23, 2019: As an homage to the grain silos in Kurt’s home in the Midwest United States, he is painting the red and white Purina logo onto Rumah Tangga. Grain silos are plentiful throughout the rural Midwest, storing dry grain, beans, and corn from the nearby farms. The silos are usually found along the main highway which runs parallel to freight train tracks, all for the ease of transporting grains around the country. The Purina Mills red and white check logo is ubiquitous, requiring no text to identify the brand which dates to around 1900.

from Sacred Spaces and Other Places: A Guide to Grottos and Sculptural Environments in the Upper Midwest (Lisa Stone and Jim Zanzi, 1993)

In Sacred Spaces and Other Places (Lisa Stone & Jim Zanzi, 1993), author Lisa Stone describes how Le Corbusier and other Bauhaus architects of the early 1900’s were astounded by midwestern grain elevators, which were “perceived as harbingers of the International Style on the American frontier by European progenitors of Modernism.” Stone’s assessment of the Midwestern silo uncovers “elements of both Modernism and sacred architecture” taking hold in the heartland of the United States.

Inspired by memories of the uncanny sort of awe that these structures can inspire, we asked Eki if it were possible to “collage” a silo structure into the architecture of Rumah Tangga. Eki’s solution was a single curve that follows around the entire top floor of the home. Seen from above, the total curve creates a half circle on the roof of Rumah Tangga. When viewed face on from the ground the curve appears as a single concrete cylinder bisecting the building, an ode to the Midwest grain elevator.

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January 20, 2019: We uprighted the beautiful (and incredibly heavy) stone pillars that flank the stone stairs near the entrance to our land. The stairs and pillars were constructed some ten years ago by Pak Slamet Jenggot. They were lost beneath the grasses and weeds grown more than head high, and finally re-revealed after two days spent clearing the open field with a brush cutter. Metal bars bent beneath the weight of the pillars when attempting to lever them upright. Amazingly, this wood was stronger than that – the same wood we are using for the doors, floors, and windows of Rumah Tangga. The wood is not only termite proof (the termites here are plentiful and exceedingly diligent) but, as we were informed by a local carpenter, it is even strong enough to keep out ghosts. Glad to see these beautiful stairs opened up and ready to become the entrance to one of our myth gardens in the future.

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January 6, 2019: On Sunday we opened up Rumah Tangga for a tour and studio visit in conjunction with the Exist Program from Dia.lo.gue. Art Space. It was an opportunity to begin telling the stories we are building here. This is a house made of mythologies reversed and regenerated. It is also a house of experimentation, questions, and open ended play.

Rumah Tangga Open Studio in conjunction with Exist Program. photos: Tandika Cendrawan

After a free stroll around the land, visitors were treated to lunch while Rumah Tangga’s architect, Eki Yousha gave a presentation on the process of designing and building the space. Our guests then moved through the studios and garden, participated in performance, and ended with a shared discussion on the floor of Ella’s studio. All in all it was a great start to the kinds of programs we are working on here. A big thank you to all who helped arrange the event and all who attended, especially Evelyn Huang and Stella Thorn, curators of Exist Program. Thank you to Tandika Cendrawan for his documentation of the afternoon’s events. We hope to see you all again at RT!

Kurt Peterson performing at Rumah Tangga during our open studio event. photos: Tandika Cendrawan

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January 2, 2019: Ella’s colorful foliage friends have emerged upon the back patio stairs – a really lovely touch to the recently created patio area. This week we are busy cleaning and adding new touches to the house in preparation for an upcoming studio visit with the Exist Program.

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December 31, 2018: Recently completed this red brick patio. Every brick is individually patterned using a grinder tool to produce a variety of rough, smooth, jagged, and wavy textures so that it would be satisfying to your bare feet. Come by for coffee or something sometime and we can spin on our heels till they feel all smooth.

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November 19, 2018: Taman Ular Batu, our black and white stone snakeskin garden has filled the inner courtyard at the center of our home. Above this, the roof opens up to the rain, sun, and moon. Our land has many stories of snakes and we’ve occasionally found their skins in the back field. Taman Ular Batu pays tribute to those stories as well as the mythologies of a serpent who lives in the underworld. That serpent is chaos. Through the tedious placement of these stones we intend to honor his place in the world while generating a sense of order within that chaos. Our result is a garden as a window to a world below, with an open passage to the world above.

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November 2, 2018: Tell me who doesn’t love a good freak show? Awesome bunch, great costumes, a natural passion for spilling the guts of pun’kins and creeping around in the dark… For nearly all who attended this was their first Halloween experience, but it sure seemed like an easy fit for this group. Couldn’t be happier sharing the best holiday of the year with our friends in Jakarta… keep it spooky people!

Pun’kin proud… Halloween at Rumah Tangga is a BYOP event…

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October 26, 2018: Just a few days left until Halloween… some Rumah Tangga decorations in the works!

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October 25, 2018: A couple of meta-view videos from this afternoon’s gardening… 1)Chaos erupts in an ant colony after shifting our potted plumeria. Hundreds of workers suddenly exposed to the light are running frantic, looking for cover and carrying white larvae in their pincers. Surely this dramatic moment will be recorded in this colony’s mythos for many generations.

2) Working on drilling some holes in this barrel for making compost. Thought it all came together like a live map of Earth as seen from space, its oceans inundated with storms.

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