Indonesia and Contemporary Art… might not be the combination of subjects you’ll expect, and yet… here I am writing on the topic of the biggest Indonesian contemporary art fair, ArtJog 2017! ArtJog is in its 10th year, which is such a wonderful statement for a country with an ever growing tendency of attracting negative press coverage.
I am an Indonesian, it is the place where I was born and raised for thirteen years of my life. Frankly, I haven’t had much things about the country that I was proud of. Yes, it is a beautiful island nation. Yes, it has a tremendous amount of natural resources. And YES, it is the place where yours truly first encounter arts. The past decades however, have stopped me from being proud of Indonesia, the political turmoils, the blatant stupidity of a small number of unfortunately, extremist influential figures.
However, there’s a ray of hope in me that one day, I will be so proud of my home land especially when keeping a close eye to the ever growing popularity of contemporary art works by the nation’s artists. Why? Because art is a creative forward thinking machine and so long as the art world thrives, Indonesia has the chance to continue to move forward.
ArtJog 2017 Changing Perspective is the best example of the young, creative minds of Indonesia at its best. I would love to share with you some of my favourite pieces from the art fair,
The artists influences varied. We can see large size skull sculpture perhaps influenced by Koons, or abstract colourful painting courtesy of Basquiat, or perhaps the geometrical uniformity of Mondrian. Regardless of the influences, it is evident that Indonesia’s contemporary artists are forward and outward thinking. They are innovative and not afraid to be different, to shock and to get their audiences’ mind thinking. As long as we have this freedom to pursuit arts, there’s hope for the future in a country that so desperately need a change in perspective.