"My name is Ariska, the only daughter of the founder of Loro Blonyo. I was born in Kasongan in Bantul, Yogyakarta in 1994. The village where I was born is known as the handmade ceramics craft center. The majority of the people who live there work as craftsmen, and one of them is my father. My father worked as a craftsman from a young age, and that was the beginning of the Loro Blonyo workshop.
“Loro Blonyo is a Javanese term for statuettes depicting couples, usually in a cross-legged sitting pose wearing traditional Javanese costumes. They can wear batik kebaya (a local traditional top) or basahan (wrapped with batik). The Javanese believe that Loro Blonyo can create a positive atmosphere, and it's also representative of a family portrait between husband and wife, representing a beautiful relationship in harmony.
"Ever since I was a little kid, I was never interested in exploring or finding out about ceramic crafts. All I knew was that my father's business could cover all of our expenses. My father was always joking about handing his business over to me, but I always debunked it. Out of the blue, my father passed away and all the jokes became a reality, so I had to take over the business. I started learning from scratch because I did not know anything about this business. The first year, I started to learn about the craftsmen, production processes, raw materials, and other things. Luckily, I wasn’t alone. During my studies, I received a lot of help from people whom my father trusted. Everything went smoothly for the first year. I understood little, yet my interest in ceramic crafts began to emerge.
"The following year might have been my lowest point, because I experienced various problems, from conflicts with my employees to financial problems. I cried almost every night and blamed God for every unfortunate event in my life. As time went by, I matured and became stronger. I am now more accustomed to addressing various problems. I realize that God is good, because whenever I am down, I’m always certain that God will lend me his hands.
"When we love something, we want to know more about it. That's what I do with ceramic crafts. I’ve been working with some great artists here. I’ve learned that clay which might not be valuable in the eyes of some people can be transformed into a very beautiful item with high artistic value. NOVICA is our hope in order to make our artistic works better known by the outside community, especially in foreign countries."