BANTUL - On Sunday afternoon (8/8) there was a different thing happening in Wukirsari village, Imogiri. The Giriloyo Gazebo seemed packed by members of the local community, including children and adults. A market has been indeed goin on with buying and selling activities actually taking place at the site. At that time a People's Batik Market was open initiated by UGM Field Practice students Unit 10.
According to Analisa, the vice coordinator of the students, the market was expected to become tourist destination for families in the future. In the market there were several activities being displayed such as expo of natural colour batik, free batik training, in addition to heron skin handicraft, singing contest, drawing contest, pecel of turi flower (vegetable salad of the flower of hummingbird tree), wedang uwuh (spice and leaves drink), and hadrah/shalawat performance.
"There are also some extra activities such as free batik and hadrah training," said Analisa, a student of Faculty of Psychology class 2007.
She added that the market was opened by 30 UGM students who were conducting field practice in Wukirsari from July 5 to August 31. Previously, several activities have also been carried out there, such as dance and entrepreneurship training to promote the Wukirsari batik.
"In principle, we are trying to provide assistance and training about the promotion and marketing of batik to the craftsmen," she explained.
Although so far Wukirsari batik is already well known but there are still problems, mainly related to promotion and marketing. Seeing this condition, the students who come from several departments, including Psychology, Pharmacy, Law, Industrial Engineering, Sociology, History and State Administration, strive to provide the marketing techniques.
"We emphasize on marketing and promotion technique; we hope that this can continue in the future," she added.
There are currently at least 600 people joining a batik community called Giriloyo Batik Society. According to one community member, Nur Ahmadi, the community is divided into 12 groups originating from the three hamlets.
"There are 600 batik makers divided in three villages such as Giriloyo, Cengkahan, and Karangkulon," he said, on the sidelines of the People's Market Batik.
He explained that the event provides enough benefits for the development of batik there. He agreed the promotion and marketing of Wukirsari batik still need to be improved.
He added that Wukirsari batik marketing so far has been conducted in several areas. Not a few foreign tourists from Korea, Japan and the U.S. who visited Wukirsari have learned to make batik pieces or buy them. He said that Wukirsari handmade batik was derived both from synthetic dyes and natural dyes, such as from tree bark or rind. This was done so that the batik products are still environmentally friendly. The price also varies from approximately 300 thousand to millions of rupiah.
"Marketing is newly done in national scale, but many tourists have come here," Nur who is also the manager of Sekar Arum Handmade Batik said.
He hoped that the Batik Market will increasingly help the marketing of Wukirsari batiks. He also hoped that similar events can be held routinely, for example once a week.