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Minister of Tourism Arief Yahya Inaugurates the Gandrung Terracotta Park

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BANYUWANGI – Minister of Tourism (Menpar) Arief Yahya inaugurated the Gandrung Terracotta Park (TGT) with the visualization of a thousand Gandrung dancers in the terraced rice fields at the foot of Mount Ijen, precisely in the Jiwa Jawa Ijen Resort area, Licin District, Banyuwangi Regency, Saturday night (20/10/2018).

The inauguration was carried out by the Minister of Tourism after witnessing the colossal performance of the Gandrung Sewu Festival on the lips of Banyuwangi's Boom Beach.. Also present at the inauguration, the Deputy Governor of East Java, Saifullah Yusuf, Deputy Governor of Bank Indonesia Rosmaya Hadi, Professor of UI Prof. Rhenald Kasali, and Banyuwangi Regent Abdullah Azwar Anas.

Arief Yahya says, This terracotta park adds to the row of tourist destinations in Banyuwangi.

“This park is beyond my expectation. Nice architecture, nice landscape, also the terracotta is also good. The Mount Ijen Jazz is also regularly held here. The attraction is really amazing,” Arief said.

On that occasion, The musical drama "Meras Gandrung" was also served at the open amphitheater at the TGT. This folk performing art tells of the process that signifies a person is ready to become a Gandrung dancer. This process is usually called the graduation of Gandrung dancers, folk tradition-based dance that has been designated as an Intangible Cultural Heritage by the Ministry of Education and Culture.

“I'm sure here there is a strong cultural root that if we explore it will be as beautiful as Ubud in Bali,” Arief said.

Terracotta itself is another name for pottery or pottery as the basic material for visualizing this gandrung dancer.

“This park is a site to care for and treat Gandrung Dance as one of Banyuwangi's cultural identities,said Sigit Pramono, the initiator of the Gandrung Terracotta Park who is also the owner of Jiwa Jawa Resort.

Sigit added, efforts to treat and treat the culture are deliberately done with an area approach, where this cultural site is spread over tens of hectares of rice fields that are left untouched.

“Gandrung dance is indeed from folk tradition, which was originally a form of gratitude for the abundant agricultural produce. Because of that, We also present this Gandrung Dance care site side by side with people's activities, i.e. farmers who keep plowing the fields with buffalo, planting and harvesting rice,"said the senior banker, former president director of BNI.

Being in the park, visitors can enjoy the beauty of Mount Ijen which has a high 2.443 meters above sea level (masl) on the west side. It is in Ijen that there is a crater that emits a blue flame (blue flame) worldwide. When looking to the east, you will see the blue of the Bali Strait.

The arrangement of the Gandrung Terracotta Park involved a fine art curator from the National Gallery of Indonesia as well as a lecturer at the Indonesian Art Institute (ISI), Dr. Suwarno Wisetrotomo. Gandrung Terracotta Park not only presents a row of visualizations of gandrung dancers made of pottery.

Enter this area, visitors are shown green hills and expanses of rice fields, the farmers plow the fields, Coffee Garden, durian tree, various types of bamboo, and local endemic plants.

In the middle of the expanse is found an open amphitheater for scheduled art performances and jazz music events.