Badut Mampang


Ingenuity distinguishes humanity from other species on the planet. Extraordinarily innovative and adaptive, our potential is infinite, yet often best revealed within a crisis. During a catastrophe, survival instincts prevail, and creative impulses birth unique and novel possibilities.

Human potential is an endless well of fascination for Dutch inter- national photographer Ted van der Hulst. Badut Mampang, his lat- est artistic revelation, portrays marginalized inner-city Jakarta residents who seek to sustain their lives through street performing.

Responding to the socioeconomic malaise engulfing their nation, peo- ple who have become unemployed during the pandemic adopt a powerful yet straightforward solution. Dressed in an array of amusing costumes, they entertain the masses in the beguiling traffic congestion of the me- tropolis utilizing comedy as an antidote for collective depression. By com- municating through light-hearted gestures, humour becomes the medi- cine, potentially becoming transformational moments for their audience.

Van der Hulst’s depicts the performers on the busy streets in a highly ar- tistic and compelling light and within secluded scenarios that inspire our imagination. He wins the trust of some consenting to being captured within intimate scenarios. The results are emotive and powerfully calming images. Badut Mampang provides a distinct and rousing lens upon who we are as a species during a revolutionary period of disruption and evolution. Van der Hulst conveys aspects of our spirit that reflects our exceptional life force.