"Rimpang's Stories", Polewali Mandar_, RHIZOMATIC ARCHIPELAGO
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Sando Pianaq

English | Indonesia

Sando or ‘shaman’ here is more like a smart person, someone who has knowledge/expert in his/her field, also an expert on spells, applies to rituals as well.

Photo: Accessed from Instagram Ipeh Nur, @ipehnurberesyit
Photo: Accessed from Instagram Ipeh Nur, @ipehnurberesyit

Today, [I] met with Mrs. Rahiya (+/- 80 years old). She is a Sando Pianaq or ‘midwife’. From the five official midwives, only Mrs. Rahiya is still alive, her son explained. Although there are other midwives, they don’t have a certificate. She showed her diploma from the health center in 1985 after passing the interview exam. She said, not only local people who ask for help for their giving birth. Palu people, Arabs, they are coming here (to Mandar). She also showed a ‘relic’ box containing tools, such as stainless containers, placenta containers, blood, placental breakers, ‘gifts’ in packages with her diploma.

Photo: Accessed from Instagram Ipeh Nur, @ipehnurberesyit
Photo: Accessed from Instagram Ipeh Nur, @ipehnurberesyit

She also told mystical stories, such as twins with crocodiles, snakes, and mothers possessed by kuntilanak when they were about to give birth. Although she now rarely accepts maternity patients because there are puskesmas (public medical centres) and hospitals, her services are still being sought. Usually, for praying and bathing the baby.

In addition, the people here still entrust their services to the obstetrical massage, usually at the age of six months and eight months, with a series of rituals. Also, after the baby is born, there are a series of rituals, one of which is mappadaiq toyang or ‘raising the baby to the swing’. Under the swing, it has given incense, and [the baby]] read-out ’for safety and to drive out the bad.

Photo: Accessed from Instagram Ipeh Nur, @ipehnurberesyit

Mrs. Rahiya also circumcised the baby. Here a baby girl (six months old) must be circumcised. Mrs. Rahiya also told me the story of her childhood when the Dutch and Japanese times in Mandar. And [she] sang a song whose lyrics mocked the passing company. She said, the children here were brave.


IPEH NUR menetap dan bekerja di Yogyakarta. Dia lulus dari Jurusan Seni Grafis, Institut Seni Indonesia. Kebanyakan karyanya merupakan ilustrasi hitam putih di atas kertas. Ipeh juga berkarya dengan menggunakan teknik dan media lain, macam sablon, etsa, mural, dan patung dari resin. Ipeh mengikuti berbagai pameran kelompok, antara lain 80 nan Ampuh, Bentara Budaya Yogyakarta (2019), Waktu dan Ingatan Tak Pernah Diam, IVAA, Yogyakarta, Pressing Matters, Framer Framed, Amsterdam (2018), Beyond Masculinity, Ark Galerie, Yogyakarta (2017), dan The 1st Jogja Miniprint Biennale, Museum Bank Indonesia Yogyakarta dan Mien Gallery, Yogyakarta (2014). Di tahun 2018, Ipeh mengadakan dua kali pameran tunggal masing-masing berjudul Salimah di REDBASE dan Banda di Kedai Kebun Forum.

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