Bachelor of Fine Art graduate Zoe Bergmans recently returned from a 3-month study tour in Indonesia after winning a sought after scholarship.
Zoe was one of 60 young people from around the world who won the prestigious Indonesian Art and Cultural Scholarship.
The program was established in 2003, and is designed to share Indonesia’s diverse arts and cultural heritage.
Zoe was based in the country’s cultural capital, Yogyakarta, where she learned the local language and mastered traditional Javanese dance, gamelan music and batik printing.
The experience culminated in a performance for dignitaries including the Indonesian Minister for Foreign Affairs.
For Zoe, the experience was life changing.
“Not only has this last few months taught me so much about Indonesia, but it has also taught me so much about myself,” she said.
“It was incredibly challenging, but also really rewarding.”
A highlight was being taught by local Indonesian artists and craftsmen.
“I spent a lot of time with amazing artists, musicians and artisans, many of whom I am now lucky enough to call my friends,” she said.
“It really showed me different ways of thinking about my artistic practice and processes.
“I was able to experiment with traditional Indonesian art forms like batik which I intend to incorporate in to my own work.”
Zoe was inspired to apply for the scholarship after taking part in a study tour of Indonesia during her final year at the Queensland College of Art.
“As part of our study tour, we did a month-long trip to Ubud, Yogyakarta and Singapore,” she said.
“We visited many galleries and artists studios and that trip really ignited my love for Indonesia.
“I would highly recommend a university study tour to anyone who is able to go.”
QCA lecturer Elizabeth Shaw said Griffith’s global mobility program offered amazing opportunities for students to travel and broaden their perspective.