Pixel postcard from Lombok: Of rituals and sacred mountains

Pixel postcard from Lombok: Of rituals and sacred mountains

Wish you were here

Text: Justin Ong

Image: Justin Ong

Photographer Justin Ong bears witness to a rare sighting in this picturesque island east of Bali

These pictures were taken in Lombok, Indonesia, while I was on assignment for Asian Geographic. During the dry season, Hindus from Bali and Lombok carry out rituals all over Indonesia in hopes for more rainfall. I trekked up Mount Rinjani to witness this ritual which was performed at Lake Segara Anak. 

Justin Ong, postcard from Lombok, Buro 24/7 Singapore

The lake has a strong spiritual presence which creates an almost whimsical atmosphere, and that was what anchored my photos as I set about to capture this series. Before the ceremony commenced, the participants would cleanse their bodies in the sacred crater lake sited within the mountain. 

 Postcard from Lombok, Justin Ong

As the sun set, the ritual began to unfold, and I was fortunate enough to witness the surreal landscape of the mountain as the forest fires spread across the lake from where we were.


About Justin Ong

Justin Ong is currently a photojournalist for Asian Geographic, correspondent for The Philippine Star, and a Singapore ambassador for the Leica SL. A graduate of the College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales, Ong's approach to photojournalism is shaped by his interest in seeking out alternative methods of experimental photography. Justin won the 2013 Kodak Award for Best in Film Photography in Australia. The photos in this article were taken with a Leica SL.