The University of Indonesia’s coat of arms was created in 1952 by Sumaxtono (real name is Sumartono), a student of the 1951 Faculty of Fine Arts, Faculty of Engineering, Universiteit Indonesia, Bandung. The basic idea of the symbol is Kala-Makara, which is the two forces that exist in nature: Kala as the power above (the power of the sun) and Makara as a force under (the power of the earth). The two forces combined by Sumaxtono became a Makara which symbolized the University of Indonesia as both a source of knowledge, as well as a result which spread in all directions.

University of Indonesia symbol consists of two element; a tree with its branch and makara.

The following are the meaning behind UI’s symbol: 

The following tree branches and buds symbolize the tree of knowledge with its branches of science, while the buds will one day bloom and become a branch of new science. The buds will always bloom as long as the tree of knowledge is alive. Thus, Sumaxtono wants to state that the branches of knowledge will develop according to the needs and progress of the times.

flowing water of Makara represents that results should spread in all areas. The meaning is that the University of Indonesia as a source of knowledge should generate scholars that wherever they are still become an intelligent, skilled, full of piety, virtuous, noble, & open-minded person, responsive to changes and advances in science & technology, as well as able to solve problems faced by society in accordance with scientific rules. 

The design and meaning of UI symbol were shown by Sumaxtono to Srihadi (student of Fine Arts FT-UI, Bandung, 1952) in 1952. Prof. KRHT H. Srihadi Soedarsono Adhikoesoemo, M.A, who was the creator of the symbol of the Bandung Institute of Technology, did not know when and who validated the UI symbol. What is certain is, the cover of the book Universiteit Indonesia, Fakulteit Teknik, Bandung: “The Plan for the Year of Study 1952-1953” uses the University of Indonesia’s emblem for the first time such as that made by Sumaxtono (frameless). (Percetakan AID, Bandung, 120 pp. )

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