A Conclave for Creativity


A Conclave for Creativity

A visit to Wijaya I's Co-Working Space.

by Muhammad Hilmi


Co-working is a term that is becoming more and more familiar in Jakarta. As the internet has become a viable professional means of communication as well as endeavor, creative entrepreneurship is growing, and freelancing becoming more commonplace, work is no longer confined to the traditional office space. A place to practice their occupations is, of course, necessary, and Co-working spaces accommodate the relatively new approach to work. A quick internet search of co-working space in Jakarta will reveal a number has already been established in Indonesia’s capital city (including the Whiteboard Journal-reviewed Comma). Just having its soft opening December 20th last year, Conclave introduces its co-working space – featuring a number of well-planned facilities that are ready support the needs of professionals.

After entering Conclave’s Wijaya facilities using a key card, visitors are greeted by a library on its ground floor. The books and magazines that are currently available are mostly of design, art, and fashion, but co-founders Aditya Hadiputra and Marshall Utoyo mentions that as Conclave builds its library, the range of subjects will broaden and include selections such as finance and start-ups. The library seems to be an area where visitors can find inspiration and references for their ideas, and means to break away from their computers (which is most likely their primary workstation).

Outside the library is a pantry with a coffee machine to be freely used by visitors, and across the library is the Conclave team’s office, it’s glass partition giving onlookers a preview of what the co-working space in second floor will be like.

Conclave’s second floor is the center of the space and its idea. There are 78 cubicles spread out over 6 areas. Its mostly wooden furniture and flooring, as well as the abundance of natural sunlight and warm lighting makes for a pleasant atmosphere – a comfortable surroundings that encourages productivity and focus, without the distractions found at home or public spaces such as cafes. The area also sports a lounge for those who want to take a break from the working environment, couches, a flat-screen television, Playstation 3, Les Paul-style guitar, magazines, and a turntable furnish the room – so if visitors want to take a quick break from their work, the place of rest is conveniently close by. The co-working space also includes computer stations and printers, a balcony, as well as showers for those who have a late night.

Located on the same level as the main co-working space is an auditorium and conference room. Conclave’s auditorium sports blocks of wood that serves as bleachers, with a capacity of about 125 persons. A sound system and projector are installed, and the space’s practical wood décor makes it fit for lectures, workshops, and as the owners’ suggest – small concerts. The conference room also sports the necessary furniture and technology, with the addition the room being soundproof to ensure fewer distractions.

Conclave’s third floor is home to rentable office spaces sporting furniture courtesy of Conclave. All but one of the spaces has been rented out at the moment.

The basement area is home to Conclave’s maker-space, place where visitors can put their hands to work with woodcutting, screen-printing, leatherworking, and photography. Marshall Utoyo explained that Conclave’s maker-space facilitates for “101”- work, where visitors can experiment with different mediums, but isn’t as complete as a space such as Indoestri. The basic tools of the trade are available for free use, and additional tools and accessories can be bought in their supply shop, or brought by the visitors themselves.

The basement is also space for a prayer room, the parking garage, Mi Ko Ro. Mi Ko Ro, short for Mie, Kopi, Rokok (Noodles, Coffee, Ciggarettes) is Conclave’s mini restaurant where you can get small meals, or just relax for a minute. If one is looking for something outside the Conclave compound, next to the co-working space is the restaurant Typology, and a relatively short walk will get you to the restaurant-filled Monginsidi street.

Marshall mentions that Conclave is a space open for everyone – start ups, freelancers, even college students who needs a space to do their thesis. Aditya Hadiputra and Marshall Utoyo traveled everywhere from Germany, Australia, South Korea, Hong Kong, and Japan to research how co-working spaces work in different environments. They mentioned that spaces such as these are fairly common in the Western countries they have visited, and although it is a relatively new concept in Asia, particularly Indonesia, they felt that it won’t be long before co-working becomes a common establishment. They also learned that co-working spaces also adjusts its facilities to the needs of their location.

The goal of the co-working space is ultimately to be a place that not only provides a place to work, but also open dialogue and collaboration between professionals. Marshall mentions that although they aren’t trying to build a Conclave community, they are inviting communities to make the co-working space their home – perhaps using their auditorium for classes, talk shows, workshops, even parties, with hopes that the people involved can network and collaborate with each other, making Conclave a home for creativity. whiteboardjournal, logo