Exi(s)t 2018; Studying history in a work of art

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Artist Aziz Amri presents a visual art that reflects the relationship between humans as objects and audiences inspired by conditions during the colonial period. (photo: IO/Aldo)

IO, Jakarta – Exi(s)t is an exhibition project held annually by Dia.Lo.Gue Artspace Kemang. This activity aims to be more than just an ’empty space’ where works of art are exhibited, but become a kind of incubator for various artistic potential. Unlike the existing programs, exi (s) is intended for those who are no longer students and are still ‘plunging’ in various fields in the creative industry, who also want to make art. Exi (s) did not invite them to ‘exit’ (from the exit) of the paths they have gone through to ‘exist’ or ‘present’ (to exist) on the Indonesian art map, Jakarta in particular. Here, Dia.Lo.Gue Artspace Kemang is interested not only in the ‘final product’, but also in various exchanges and intensive conversations that form a work of art and also an exhibition.

Exi (s) t program that has been running since 2012 and is back again at the end of 2018. Now it has entered its seventh time with the theme exhibition from Another Time. This exhibition of ideas from Hermawan Tanzil, FX Harsono and dia.lo.gue Artspace is filled with a list of names of talented artists whose works increasingly color the treasures of Indonesian art, namely Alexandra Karyn, Aziz Amri, Ella Wijt, Rummana Yamanie, Demburat Sherchle, Tandika Cendrawan , and Yovista Athajida. Exi(s)t 7 was curated by Evelyn Huang, who together with the artists tried to explore the historical aspects in the broadest range of artistic interpretations.

FX harsono, is an artist and educator who has actively criticized the development of Indonesian politics and culture since he was a student at STSRI ‘ASRI’ Yogyakarta and at the Jakarta Art Institute. Several solo exhibitions held by FX Harsono were Testimonies, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore (2010) and The Erased Time, National Gallery of Indonesia, Jakarta (2009). Hermawan Tanzil is a graphic designer and founder of LeBoYe. All his works till date have been published in several international media such as: Type Annual 28, Type Director of the Club of New York, Nov. 2007 US; Tokyo TDC Annual Books and many more.

“The big theme for the exi(s)t program is to study the historical aspects in the broadest range of artistic interpretations. “Epic historical events, myths, oral traditions, personal narratives and the politicization of history are some of the topics addressed by young Jakarta-based artists who are members of this program,” said FX Harsono.

From another time presents works by eight Jakarta-based artists in response, investigation, and exploration with the theme “alternative history”. The urgency to create works of art that intersect with the past begins as an attempt to influence or disrupt increasingly polarized society in recent years. Along with the ideas of creative young practitioners, visitors are invited to review the shared history that has been inherited by the ancestors. However, each individual is responsible for its own history, a group of individuals has greater power to regulate it.

“Although there is no intention to indulge in the present which is one of the popular keywords in the millennial and Z genes, it is undeniable that the audience will capture how a generation views historical fragments that are meaningful to themselves through this exhibition,” FX Harsono explained when he met press at dia.loe.gue Artspace.

The first room of the exhibition was colored with illustrations on canvas which was the work of Sherchle, he who was interested in the golden age of the kingdom of the archipelago described it through historical illustrations that he distorted. Because it is in the past, for him history is very easy to change but it is still believed by generations after. Alexandra Karyn, one of the talented young artists involved in this event, made a story from the jargon “history is now in the newspaper media frame”.

“The theme that I adopted ‘History is Now’. And, it is in two forms, one in the newspaper media frame, “said Alexandra Karyn.

Another artist Rummana Yamanie also seemed to be totally working on her findings on a multi-role female figure. His performance through media from clay, he expressed concern about the many cases of patriarchal practices that put women under men. Where, it must be admitted, there are still various cases of female discrimination. Also through this work, he has indirectly intense and this work is not in touch with gender and feminism, but rather in a multi-gender role.

“The work that I made gives awareness to the people who still have the concept of patriarchal thinking, to realize that since some time ago the role of women has been recognized. The focus of the idea of ​​art that I made would be voiced to parties or groups that still dominate women. They must begin to open their eyes and minds because they see a lot of discrimination, “he said.

Other young artists also present historical-themed artwork according to their respective interpretations and artistic creativity. Like Aziz Amri displays performance that reflects the relationship between humans as objects with audiences inspired by conditions in the colonial period. While Ella Wijt presents a parallel universe based on oral history and her findings on sites that are personal to her. The tinge uses a visual strategy used by the Stamboel group in the past, into the concept of cinema that is their specialty. (Aldo)