Bartega: More Than Just Fun Activity

Written & Edited By
Fazrah Heryanda

Photo Source
Bartega Studio

The discourse of how art equals exclusivity isn’t a novelty. The way some people perceive art weighs down its meaning as the expression of emotion and notion. But, with the presence of social media, which can now be used as an exhibition, it evidently attracts more audiences and deliberately changes the assumption that art belongs only to a specific community. Since 2017, Bartega has welcomed the first-timer or eager learner who wants to experience the art activities. Combine paint and sip, Bartega aim to host the program in a more relaxed manner, so when the audience paint while sipping their favorite wine, they can enjoy art to the fullest.

Furthermore, Bartega wants people to be familiar with the concept of painting or art as something easy to follow if they put our hearts into. Through Bartega’s series of activities, people can feel the benefits of painting. For instance, by doing art, people can ease their mind and bolster creative inspiration. With the restriction of holding offline activity, Bartega shifts all their classes and hosts four weekly tutorials via Instagram Live and more interactive ones through Zoom. The classes vary from learning beautiful sceneries to Disney classics that suit audience liking in a package of Stay Creative At Home. Before pandemic hits, Bartega could host up to 60 activities, a mix between public and private in one month. Today, Bartega can attract 25-35 audiences per activity and garnered 1500-2000 audiences in total per month. Those big numbers show a significant growth of Bartega as a community and making art more accessible to the audience.

"Some people thought that art was something they couldn't do or far from their potential and skills, but we want to create the activity as lively as possible"

With the idea of mixing the word bar and Bottega, Bartega is defined as a social painting club. “Associated with a social life, the bar offers the comfort that people have been looking for after long-drained days. Meanwhile, Bottega is derived from Italic word, which means artist workshop. We want to be a part of a social lifestyle where the participant can learn how to enjoy painting. Some people thought that art was something they couldn’t do or far from their potential and skills, but we want to create the activity as lively as possible,” told Benson, founder of Bartega.

“We used to see how people being skeptical about our activity. When we paint at the cafe on the weekend, the first impression always falls to the perception that our activity is only for the kids. But, as the day goes by, more people are coming, and they prefer to spare their time to join our class rather than spending time at the mall. They told us that there’s a sense of achievement and fulfillment when they can bring their painting home. In Bartega, we do provide an example for the audience to follow. Then, we teach them during a 3-hour session on how to replicate those paintings. From there, we encourage them to try a different approach, from preference or mood, so that they can improvise their paint. So, even though we give them the same guidance, the outcome will be different,” adds Benson.

As people stroke the brush to the canvas, they are actually pouring out their thoughts. Bartega understands that sentiment and hoping that people can be more spirited and confident with what they are doing. “We want to remind people that it’s okay to make mistakes and experiment so they could achieve something different from others. By doing this activity, we hope it will enhance creativity and stimulate an optimistic attitude that can change the status quo. In the future, we want to set the example that being a painter is also can be a sustainable career because we believe that if we stay creative, everything will work.”

"By doing this activity, we hope it will enhance creativity and stimulate an optimistic attitude that can change the status quo."

Aligned with their hope, Bartega also shares what they consider as the most significant achievement. It’s not something grande, but how many audiences give the testimony that their activity works as stress-relieve even better to cope up with mental health problems. The existence of Bartega turned out to work beyond what they can imagine. It is worthy of healing. “It just makes us happy how the audience sees us more than a fun activity.”