A series of 18 unique pictures, showing Jakarta in November 1965. The photographs were taken by Co Rentmeester (1936- ), a professional Dutch rower who, after he joined the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome, moved to the United States to study photography at the Art Center College in Los Angeles.
Rentmeester initially started his career as a freelance photographer in 1965 for LIFE Magazine. Between late 1965 and 1969 Rentmeester was in Asia. where he particularly covered the Vietnam war. One of his pictures showed an M48 tank gunner looking through a gunsight. It was selected as World Press Photo of the Year and notably it was the first colour photograph to win the award. He was in Jakarta following the 1965 coup attempt, and also in Hong Kong during the extensive civil disturbances in 1967.
After Rentmeester was wounded by a Vietcong sniper near Saigon, he returned to the U.S. in 1972. His 1965 pictures from a travel through Indonesia were shown in the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam, Smithsonian Institution in Washington DC and Asia House, New York. The 1965 photo report of Jakarta shows a city, apparently unmoved by the recent coup attempt.
A unique and colourful photo taken just south of Pasar Glodok, looking south towards the start of the former Molenvliet canal.
At the front of the photo is where Jalan Hayam Wuruk (left) and Jalan Gajah Mada (right behind the trees) are coming together to mark the start of Jalan Pintu Besar Selatan. The roadworks at the front left are taking place at the turnoff to Jalan Blustru (formerly Gang Lindeteves), which leads to the Mangga Besar district, east of Glodok. On the corner is a small police post. The former Glodok jail is on the left but behind the photographer and was still present in 1954 as the Pendjara Glodok.
This picture strikingly shows the transition between colonial garden-city Batavia with its tree-lined orderly streets and modern Jakarta with its ongoing struggle to digest traffic and manage pollution. The streets are still marked by some majestic trees, but as we can see they are clearly suffering along the small streets that scream to be widened to allow for the growing traffic. Becaks and cars already mark a steady traffic flow on Jalan Hayam Wuruk. Nevertheless, the Anker Beer advertisement sign close to the start of the canal was still present at this location in the mid 1980s. This rare colour photo was taken by Everardus de Jong.