‘Citayam Fashion Week’ set for Sarinah relocation amid trademark controversy

Twins Veronika Krasnasari and Valerie Krasnadewi of ‘Asia’s Next Top Model’ fame strutting the crosswalk-cum-catwalk at Citayam Fashion Week. Photo: Video screengrab
Twins Veronika Krasnasari and Valerie Krasnadewi of ‘Asia’s Next Top Model’ fame strutting the crosswalk-cum-catwalk at Citayam Fashion Week. Photo: Video screengrab

UPDATE JULY 26: Baim Wong has pulled his trademark for Citayam Fashion Week amid public outrage. Plans to move the event have also reportedly been shelved.

Original story follows below.

One famous YouTuber’s savior complex may spell the end of an organic subculture movement, as the hotly-discussed “Citayam Fashion Week” seems set for relocation following a controversial trademark claim.

Citayam Fashion Week, which we featured in our latest Jakarta weekend guide, is a catch-all phrase (and not necessarily referring to any particular week) for the very fashionable gathering of young people in Dukuh Atas on Jalan Sudirman, the capital’s main commercial thoroughfare. The movement is dominated by youths taking the train from the outskirts of Jakarta, most notably from the humble district of Citayam in Bogor Regency, who fashion catwalks out of crosswalks and flaunt their finest #OOTD week in, week out over the past month.

The movement has admittedly been sliding on the coolness scale when professional models and celebrities, as well as politicians like our very own Governor Anies Baswedan, began literally walking the catwalk in recent weeks.

But none of those offenses arguably compare to how YouTube personality Baim Wong and his wife Paula Verhoeven filed a trademark for Citayam Fashion Week as a fashion and entertainment brand with the Law and Human Rights Ministry last week, the report for which broke over the weekend. The move prompted jeers from the public, who have been popularizing the term “created by the poor, stolen by the rich” online, branding the trademark a cynical cash-grab. 

Baim has hit back against the overwhelming negative response, saying that he intends to continue to foster youth creativity, albeit on clear legal grounds.

Yet today, he said he intends to move Citayam Fashion Week to nearby Sarinah shopping mall, in response to some disorderly conducts that have been reported from recent weeks’ events. These include minors smoking, sleeping on the streets, and, in the words of Vice Governor Ahmad Riza Patria, “teenage boys proudly dressing up in women’s clothing.

As anyone who has recently visited Sarinah might know, the mall has been incredibly crowded day in, day out since it reopened in March, and we fail to see how the facility can accommodate thousands of young people in addition.

Even West Java Governor Ridwan Kamil, who himself looked dashing at Citayam Fashion Week recently, called on Baim to pull the trademark, scrap any relocation plans, and return the movement to the youths, lest it lose its soul.

Do you agree that Citayam Fashion Week should be moved? If so, is there a better option than Sarinah? Let us know in the comments section below or on our social media pages.

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