Danish family living in Sibang in Bali with a sustainable passion and love of nature
Profile: Kristine, husband Sarid, two sons, Marius 14 years old, Severin 8 years old
Originally from: Denmark
Arrived in Bali: We lived here for 2 years from 2018-2020, and then moved to Mallrorca, Spain, where we lived for a year. We just returned to Bali in the beginning of July 2021.
What made you decide to MOVE TO Bali?
We wanted to live more sustainably and in closer connection with nature and also had a deeply felt need to have more time to embark on the projects we are passionate about, which our lifestyle here allows.
We also had a wish to open our childrens’ eyes to a very different culture and way of life and to give them a sustainability-focused education – and here in Bali there are many wonderful options to do so.
Where is Home in Bali and Why did you decide to live there?
We live in Sibang, very close to Green School. Marius, my oldest son, has just started high school at Green School, and he bicycles to and from school every day, which is so nice for him and such a freedom. We really like it here. Sibang is located between Ubud and Canggu, so it’s convenient for visiting friends in both areas, and it is very quiet out here. There is also a very lovely community here and an increasing number of expat families. Our house has the most beautiful view of the jungle from the first floor. I love sitting here writing.
We are also in the process of building a simple, open wooden house in North Bali, where I work with a weavers collaboration (see my response to your last question). The house will be our sanctuary for contemplation and work.
HOW DO YOU FINANCIALLY LIVE IN Bali?
I am an author and also do online lectures for design academies in Europe.
PLEASE SHARE THE SCHOOL LIFE OF YOUR CHILDREN IN BALI.
Severin, my 8-year old son, attends Wood School. He started in August and absolutely loves it. I have been following Wood School on Instagram for years, and when we returned to Bali in July we wanted Severin to go to a smaller school than Green School, and Wood School seemed like the perfect match for him.
Both Green School and Wood School are wonderful schools with an overall focus on sustainability. Marius, my oldest, is very happy with high school at Green School; he has inspiring teachers, is a part of innovative, sustainability-projects, and has a large group of peers, which to him is very important.
Wood School is small and has a wonderful family-like feeling to it, which Severin loves. In his class there are only 7 kids, which creates a unique sense of togetherness. He also loves that there are lots of “hands-on” workshops: cooking, gardening, wood-work, dance, yoga, natural dye etc. Furthermore, we are very happy about their focus on community, gratitude and kindness; it seeps through everything there, and materialises in the older children helping and guiding the younger ones, in all the children feeding and bathing the orphaned dogs that live in the campus, and in love and respect for nature.
WHAT IS IT LIKE RAISING CHILDREN IN BALI?
It’s great! The outdoors lifestyle really suits our approach to education and upbringing. Always being outside (most of the time barefooted) automatically fosters a deep connection to nature that will undoubtedly result in care and love for plants and animals.
This year you spoke at the Ubud Writers festival – please share with us your passion about sustainable design and the books you have written.
I have written a couple of books on sustainable design and sustainable living; one of which was written here in Bali. You can read about my books here: https://www.oroeditions.com/product/anti-trend/ and https://www.routledge.com/Aesthetic-Sustainability-Product-Design-and-Sustainable-Usage/Harper/p/book/9781138369184
I also write a blog called The Immaterialist which basically works as my online laboratory in which I explore resilient design solutions and the sustainable, fulfilling life in words and photos.
My latest book Anti-trend investigates how one can legitimise designing anything new in a world that is overflowing with discarded things and products by looking into rewilding, permaculture principles and opening up the design-object. Furthermore it explores sustainable living as a justifiable lifestyle worth sustaining.
What advice do you have FOR FAMILIES who wish to MOVE TO Bali?
Come with an open mind, don’t bring too many things (you won’t need a lot and the things you bring will be the wrong ones), and allow Bali to guide you.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
I recently started working with a weaver’s collaborative in North Bali and together with my friend Putu I founded Alamanda. It is a very exciting and rewarding project. So many crafts traditions are endangered worldwide and not least here in Bali. They are taught throughout generations, from hand to hand. And, if the livelihood of artisans is threatened – as it is today due to the overproduction of mass-produced goods that handmade products cannot compete with in terms of price – young generations will seek other kinds of employment (in Bali, typically in tourism). Right now in Bali, the pandemic has emptied the island from tourists. But instead of feeling despaired, I am touched by experiencing the Balinese people’s incredible resilience: there is hope and there is desire to do things differently and to return to ancient ways and principles that always worked – to farm and grow and create. This is a golden opportunity for Balinese crafts. To follow Kristine visit: IG immaterialist and ALAMANDA BALI
If you live in Bali and would like to join our interview collection feel free to reach out to me anytime.
Interested to make a move to Bali?
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