The Jakarta Post
Eighty cartoon caricatures showcased in Malang City Hall and the East Java city’s town square from Oct. 31 to Nov. 2 made quite an impression.
Titled Demokrasi Dikorupsi (Corrupted Democracy), the exhibition was organized by the Malang Cartoonist Party (Paitun) and anticorruption community Kalimetro. It displayed the creations of cartoonists from Malang, Batu and Surabaya in East Java; Semarang, Kendal and Surakarta in Central Java; Bandung in West Java; as well as Jakarta, Jambi and Yogyakarta.
“The exhibition is self-funded. It is held as a medium to educate the public, to voice our criticism and to offer input to the government,” Sawir Wirastho, coordinator of Paitun, told The Jakarta Post in early November.
Malang Mayor Sutiaji said the exhibition was a campaign against corruption, especially for members of the Regional Legislative Council.
“With this exhibition, we hope the youth can be exposed to the value of honesty,” he said. “By next year, we hope to compile the exhibited works in a book to be used in elementary and junior high schools. It aligns with Mayoral Decree No. 45/2019 on anticorruption education.”
The exhibition also offered various activities for students, including short-movie screenings, discussions and a caricature workshop.
“Conveying criticism through caricatures is more elegant and interesting to the young generation,” said Wirastho.
Fatur Rochman, a participating graphic designer and cartoonist from Malang, said he was impressed by the students’ works.
“They are familiar with corruption issues as well as the social conflicts in Papua,” he said. “Caricatures are where you can let out your grievances, and the right medium to accommodate social criticism is through art, including caricature.”
Fatur, who contributed two caricatures, said none of the exhibited works bore a title.
“The public is free to interpret their meaning,” he said.
Eighth-grader Johanes Clemence of Kristen Petra Malang junior high school said he found the event interesting.
“I was how taught to make good caricatures for all ages with social criticism as the theme,” he said.
Ajimad Ardiansah, a student from SMPN 19 Malang state junior high school, said a discussion held during the event had helped him fully grasp the concept of corruption.
“The topic was not yet taught in school,” he said. “Using caricatures is fun and it can amplify our objections to social issues.”
Giri Suprabdiono, KPK community service education director, appreciated the exhibition and its aim to raise anticorruption awareness.
“Caricatures can be very effective reminders, especially when they are constantly seen by government officials,” he said. “Malang will also be the first city in Indonesia to incorporate anticorruption through caricatures in its school textbooks.” (swa/wng)
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