With the ever-growing population, the government seek an opportunity to create a reciprocal relationship with the use of platform where young creative businesses can utilize machines, such as 3D printers as well as woodworking, sewing and fashion sizing machines, and share their skills to local residents at the recently opened Jakarta Creative Hub.
Creativity is a cycle and constant flow of ideas, bouncing about and moving from one spot to another. In order to grow, it needs to be shared with more than just one mind. And the fastest way for creativity to foster and travel is if it moves and matures within a society that moves at a speed that values its creativity’s growth. It’s now a renowned fact that Jakarta is a city that’s all about the daily hustles made by the society within it. And perhaps now, the pace that Jakarta is moving in is leaning towards one that’s no longer all about money making, but also creativity developing.
With the growing number of small business in Indonesia, mainly within Jakarta’s urban walls, the issue of how to foster these developing businesses to bloom into its fullest potential comes to mind. Or perhaps, the focus should not only be on fostering Jakarta’s small businesses, but rather its flow of creativity. The establishment of Jakarta’s newest communal space for creative endeavors, or more commonly known as a co-working space, Jakarta Creative Hub, attempts to meet this ever-growing need of support from developing creative businesses in town by providing a platform for those which cannot yet afford to establish their own independent offices; in hopes that the creativity developed within the walls of the space may find its way back to the communities outside of it.
Officially inaugurated just March of this year, Jakarta Creative Hub opens its doors not only to those in need of free office spaces, but also those seeking venues and other creative accommodations to hold seminars, workshops, exhibitions, or even just those in need of a free space to get some work done. The first thing to notice after entering this one-floor facility in the first floor of Graha Thamrin, besides it’s somewhat ‘aesthetic’ industrial-style interiors of course, is the VIP room on the left of the entrance, which according to the staff, is a private room for Jakarta Creative Hub’s administrators. You will also find a cafe on the right that is yet to be running, but may also be used as a dining area for any parties holding events there.
The co-working space has three separate classrooms, called classroom A, B, and C. Each classroom is entitled for the hosting of workshops, seminars, and talkshows. Two meeting rooms are situated just next to classroom A; divided by removable partitions. First up further into the space is the Makerspace area, which consists of three separate rooms containing sewing machines, wood-cutting tools and machines, and a room containing a 3D printer and a laser cutting machine. These rooms are also to be freely used by whoever is holding workshops. The usage of the space as a ‘creative lab’ for Jakartans regardless of age, as proven by a sewing workshop held for children on school vacation at the time of our visit. However, as the staff explains, machines in the Makerspace area are subjects to prototype producing only, and not for mass-production of any kind. Displayed in the Makerspace are also acrylic and wooden miniatures printed and cut by the machines.
Further enhancing the space’s openness to the public, just next to the Makerspace area is a small library situated at the corner of the space. Consisting of wooden bleachers, reading cubicles, and a shelf filled with a range of books donated by a partner of Jakarta Creative Hub’s, Kinokuniya, independent visitors are free to come by at any time to utilize the space for studying or just chilling out.
On the other side of Jakarta Creative Hub is a separate room consisting of two opposite-sided rows of co-offices, which are freely rented by small creative businesses carefully selected by Jakarta Creative Hub’s panel of juries. A center for a range of businesses from fashion, architecture, to illustration, you can almost witness the emerging flow of uprising creativity from the local scene. The local Jakartan businesses such as Largo, GiFU Studio, Egglustration, Tiba, WeCreate, Bits & Bobs, Alima Studio, and eight more are given a year-long contract to rent the offices, in hopes that they are able to contribute to the space and local communities by providing workshops, trainings, or consultations. Meanwhile, between the rows of co-offices is another meeting room situated at the back of the room to be used either by co-office renters or by the space administrators.
“The contribution expected from (the chosen tenants of the space) is to create workshops,” an interning staff explains. Perhaps, as a way of saying that creativity contained within the space is the same creativity that’s hoped to become beneficial for the greater good, which is a wider scope of Jakartan communities. A cycle of creativity unleashed from Jakarta Creative Hub as it meets its purpose as the container of that creativity.
The idea behind the space’s concept, as shown on its title, is indeed to become a ‘container’ of Jakartans’ creativity; which is why tenants looking to rent the co-offices or hold seminars and workshops are required to have a Jakarta ID. Through workshops and trainings from and for various communities and the provision of creative industrial production tools and machines, Jakarta Creative Hub clearly sought out to not only foster the growth of creative industries in town, but also provide local communities with skills and knowledge of the creative production systems.
By openly inviting the public to not only create, brainstorm ideas, ‘experiment’, hold showcases, share their creativity with the public, or even to just come and enjoy the space, Jakarta Creative Hub certainly has made itself into a container of creativity, and will probably become a witness of the creation, growth, and development of many more possibilities within Jakarta’s creative scene. As for the full maximization of the space itself, more recognition and utilization of its free public spaces by the actual public’s initiative wouldn’t hurt.