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Collaborative Performance: IMME, Text-Music-Dance performance (Jakarta)

Laksmi collaborates with the choreographer Marij Nielsen on a text-music-dance performance at Salihara Arts Centre centered on a girl called Imme.


Imme is a person barely 30 centimeters tall. No one really knows if Imme is male or female and it is difficult to discover the native ground of this character. Imme’s age is also difficult to estimate. What is clear is that it is not an old person or a child. Imme looks strong and healthy with colored skin and short dark hair. A purple top and shorts leave Imme’s arms and legs uncovered. Imme goes barefoot round the world.

The production of Imme came into being from the desire to develop a character that as broad an audience as possible could identify with. Imme is “the human soul” of the 21st century and goes round in a fantasized world, which no one can say which country it is. The question here is whether the observers i.e. the audience from different countries and cultures (Holland, Indonesia, Ireland, Poland) also think this way. As such the project is also a study into the self-identification of people from different ethnic backgrounds with an imaginary figure outside the maker himself.

The Imme project in Jakarta—as part of the entire project that is to take place in several countries—consists of workshops, painting and audience interaction in public space, documentary making, and a performance involving visual artists, performers, writers, musicians, and a filmmaker. They are Marij Nielen, Jotja Bessems, Sylvia Volkert, Marleen van Geffen, and Laksmi Pamuntjak. The whole Imme project is organized by Maanzaad Foundation.

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