Putri (16) lives with her mother (42), who is blind. Putri is a third-grade junior high school student who sells bead bracelets at a tourist site on her way home from school.
But Putri’s mother suffers from trauma from the Bali bombing incident and is always worried and afraid of crowds. One day, Putri invites her mother to visit Sanur Beach – both to reminisce about the past and also to take toya segara (ocean water) to sprinkle in their back yard.
The trip to Sanur Beach is made on public transport, a bemo. However, when they arrive at the beach, they are expelled by a security guard because a hotel has privatized the area.
Wayan Martino is a creative director, photographer and videographer based in Bali, Indonesia. Since 2016, he has pursued visual arts as a way of participating in and contributing to Balinese communities through countless field trips. Martino’s works have been published and exhibited nationally and in his birthplace. In addition to his commissioned works, Martino enjoys working on personal projects and collaborating with other Balinese artists, creating photo essays and short movies to expose the beauty and struggles of his beloved island.
In 2019, he built Niskala Studio as an alternative space for working on personal projects and as a community space for making documentaries and fiction films. Niskala Studio also holds workshops and discussions on photography and film for local communities.
I would like to express my concern for the landscape in Bali, which is changing so quickly and affects both the environment and the people. I see that tourism provides economic support for some people, but, on the other hand, it also brings new problems. One of these is the issue of land conversion which is massive and not only reduces the amount of productive land but also brings in the land mafia because of the rampant construction of villas in rural areas. Springs are also shrinking, with damaged irrigation and the privatization of public spaces.
Through the roles of Putri and her mother in Galang Kangin, I want to present the complexity of this situation from the perspective of a simple family living in a village, which is indirectly affected. Men Putri, who is blind, can still see in her mind’s eye an area in Denpasar that was beautiful and very different from what Putri looks at in the bemo – Bali tries to promote its natural beauty but it is gradually being exploited. It is essential for us to give space to the public regarding this issue and film can generate critical discussions about Bali, the land and its people.