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Project October 19, 2022

The Threat of Extinction of Noken Raw Material Plants



Papua's Noken craft has been designated World Heritage since December 2012. Noken materials and colors are all taken from plants in the highland rainforests of Papua. The cultivation of noken materials, especially orchids, is difficult due to the high altitude. In addition, there is limited personnel and funds resulting in minimal patrols from officers in Region II of Manokwari Regency, which is where none resources grow and blossom.

The main threat to Papua's Noken craft is the continuous exploitation while plant growth is slow. But that's not the only one: there's also forest narrowing due to infrastructure development for regional expansion, illegal logging, and gold mining.

In this context: can biodiversity prevail?

This project will photograph and record the condition of noken material and dye plants in their native habitats. The reporters will follow the process of making noken from collecting materials to the sale of Papua Noken. The process of Papuan women selling noken is a story in itself. Reporters will also explore the perceptions of noken craftsmen about the threat of noken materials' extinction and forest destruction and cover conservation efforts.