Yogyakarta Special Region (Daerah Istimewa Yogyakarta, DIY) is officially one of Indonesia's 32 provinces. Yogyakarta is one of the foremost cultural centers of Java. This region is located at the foot of the active Merapi volcano, Yogyakarta was in the 16th and 17th centuries the seat of the mighty Javanese empire of Mataram from which present day Yogyakarta has the best inherited of traditions. The city itself has a special charm, which seldom fails to captivate the visitor. This province is one of the most densely populated areas of Indonesia. The city came into being in 1755, after the Mataram division into the Sultanates of Yogyakarta and Surakarta (Solo). Gamelan, classical and contemporary Javanese dances, wayang kulit (leather puppet), theater and other expressions of traditional art will keep the visitor spellbound. Local craftsmen excel in arts such batiks, silver and leather works. Next to the traditional, contemporary art has found fertile soil in Yogya's culture oriented society. ASRI, the Academy of Fine Arts is the center of arts and Yogyakarta itself has given its name to an important school of modern painting in Indonesia, perhaps best personified by the famed Indonesian impressionist, the late Affandi.