Tuesday, 10 January 2023 at 6.45 pm for 7 pm
Venue: The Indonesian Embassy, 30 Great Peter Street, Westminster London SW1P 2BU
Lying 150km off the coast of West Sumatra, the Mentawai Islands have long attracted surfers from all over the world. Siberut, the largest island in the chain, is also famous for its tattooed hunter-gatherer tribes, and was recognised as a biosphere reserve in 1981, and in 1993, the western part of the island was designated as a national park.
AIS council members Ati Kisjanto and John Aglionby visited one of the tribes to experience how they maintain their traditional lifestyle while embracing some aspects of modernity. They will give an illustrated talk based on their trip, which required a 13-hour journey by ferry, motorbike, dugout canoe and foot to reach the people on Siberut island. Their activities ranged from foraging for and eating maggots, making loincloths from bark, learning how poison is made, and going river fishing and finally and joining the Mentawi peope for a traditional “feast”.