Jepara is a small town located on the north coast of Java, north-east of Semarang the capital city of Central Java Province, Indonesia.
Besides having many beautiful places, Jepara is welknown as one of the biggest carving industry in Indonesia. The beauty of the Jepara’s wood carving is famous locally and worldwide. Its reputation has attracted many related economic activities linked to wood production and processing, especially furniture making.
Jepara has had a very strong influence for nearly 2,000 years in world history. The colonial Dutch burned it to the ground twice in one year for breaking their trade monopoly. It was also the home of Kartini the Javanese aristocrat whose life and letters advanced educational opportunities for Indonesian women in the early twentieth century.
There is an old folk tale that tells of how Jepara became a city of artisans and carvers of wood. A long time ago a king hired a famous artist to paint a picture of his wife. The artist was as artists are very imaginative and created a nude painting of the queen. The king liked the painting a lot until he noticed a very obscure birthmark on the nude painting that the artist should never have seen. So as the tale goes the king was so mad that he tied the artist and all of his tools to a kite and cut it free. The artist and his tools flew high over the mountain and came to rest in what is now known as Jepara.
Nowadays, about 3008 furniture enterprises, scattered over 103 villages in Jepara district producing both for export, and domestic markets. And now Jepara furniture has been exported to more than 68 countries in 5 continentals.