Sabtu, 17 Juli 2010

= Grand Opening BaliWood Resort Art & Culture Centre

Grand Opening BaliWood Resort Art & Culture Centre

Time July 26 · 5:00pm - 10:00pm

Location BaliWood - Jalan Penestanan Sayan Ubud 80571 Gianyar Bali Indonesia

More Info Hearsay

Ten local painters face to face

26th July - 26th September 2010

Over a century ago, some of the most celebrated pioneers of modernist painting departed from their European homes in the search of new lands which, untarnished by the pressures imposed by Western societies, woul...d grant them new sources of inspiration. Whilst some, with Paul Gauguin as the most renowned example, ventured into colonies such as French Polynesia, others established new homes in what was then known as the East Indies: Indonesia. Driven by a search for a rawness of expression in painterly form, along with a newly sought sense of naïveté which was perceived to be at the core of life in this exotic, almost mythical region, these artist-explorers aimed to encounter new forms of representation critiquing the European painting tradition they travelled away from. Painting as we commonly think of it today was unknown to the local population at the time. Yet today we find that whilst in the West postmodernism – as a critical revision or rejection of modernism – implies a radical transition from painting as a pivotal means of representation to other media, in Indonesia painting is flourishing at exponential rates in both quantity and quality. How did this geo-cultural transition occur? In its historical genesis, the answer lies not in an increase of institutionalised art education, or a progressive globalisation in the art market leading to the ‘importation of new masterpieces, resources and museums into South East Asia. Of course, all these elements did play a role into the new wave of painting that is registerable today in this area of the world; but the primary launching factor can be accredited to, well, pure and simple hearsay.When at the beginning of the 20th century European artists moved to Indonesia, often residing in Bali as their prime home base, this was not without clamour. At the time, the island was not yet flooded with tourists, and foreigners represented a sort of ‘curiosity’ to the local population just with the same intensity as the locals epitomised a peculiar essence of ‘otherness’ in the eyes of their new guests. Soon enough, these artists, Willem Hofker and Theo Meier as renowned examples, were both learning from their surroundings, its people and their traditions, as well as welcoming young keen artists (even children!) into their homes, forging new friendships and mutual apprenticeships. They henceforth left an imprint in the local culture, incorporating a tradition of painting which was previously exclusive to the West into new modes of representation through the skilful hands on their pupils. A radically different generation of artists all around the archipelago was born, and in turn shared the fruits of their lifelong findings with the next generations to come. Once more we may return to our question as to why, given the circumstances, the postmodern dogma in the West arguably ‘killed’ painting whilst in the East the use of this medium is acquiring more and more variety and depth as we speak. New directions in Asian art are gaining world-wide acknowledgment; through the surfacing of notable investments in recently established creative hotspots, it is now Eastern artists who are leading the way to a cutting-edge, fresh perspective on an otherwise declining tradition of painting. The booming Chinese art market has so far marked a vital driving force for this phenomenon: more lately, emerging Indonesian painters are finally also starting to attract a huge amount of attention, across both national and international art scenes. If it is true that, from an art historical perspective of painting, those who were once apprentices have now surpassed their masters, this is due to a radical shift from an initial stage of imitation of the modernist tradition to a fully matured stage of artistic consciousness which only hints at its Western descent. As painters all across Indonesia started to aim at more self-conscious and unique forms of representation, they also solidified their own cultural identity. It is not surprising, then, that looking back at this last century of Indonesian painting as evidence of a phenomenal artistic melting pot, we can trace the source of a promising future for the history of painting in a completely evolved context, rendering the breach of its tradition as a starting point for several, rather than just a single Eurocentric heritage.It is this new life of painting, this accidental divergence in its history, that the upcoming exhibition Hearsay aims to explore. But even more than its mere theoretical background, for the opening of BaliWood Art and Culture Centre we are interested in celebrating the manner in which the process of it all has unfolded: experientially, through the passing on of information, subjective information, which with its revealing lies and underlying truths has led to a new wave of artistic formations. As a starting point for such a discourse, we depart from an active confrontation of a number of local artists; by local, we do not necessarily mean that they are from Bali, but that by residing in the island they have become part of it, and its culture part of them, like a wondrous process of reciprocal osmosis. As a consequence, to this day, in each of the painters we notice a glimpse of the other. An untraceable trace which, whether directly or not, lingers about and is passed on through the mouths and ears of a compound of subjectivities which is than the sums of its parts: a closely knit community which, we believe, is worth treasuring for generations to come.Ephemeral ImprintA photographic installation by Karel TijsseWhen asked about his profession whether informally or on an application form, Karel Tijsse responds with one word: ‘life’. Though he may fund his several and extensive travels around the world through teaching tennis, though he may be a renowned Dutch photographer, he perceives such occupations as activities he dips in an out of, along what he believes is the incredibly short yet wondrous journey of life. Art, for Tijsse, is something that he stumbled upon rather than pursuing as a career choice. After several years of living in various countries, from India to Australia, and documenting such adventures through the lens of a camera, he came to the realisation that he had created an interestingly insightful body of work which was deemed to be ‘artistic’ by many. The aforementioned element of ‘insight’ in his work is somewhat ironic, as this photographer, unlike many others, constantly strives for an element of detachment between himself and the surrounding world. Tijsse hence thinks of himself as a spectator of nature, or society, rather than a part of it. Each snapshot, therefore, can be interpreted as an ephemeral act of reaching out to another form of being, to then depart once more into the unknown. In Tijsse’s upcoming exhibition, featuring a series of photographic works juxtaposing doors and portraits, the artist explores his fascination for temporality and human character with images taken from Balinese living compounds. Though beautifully constructed, these images are far more than simple aesthetic experiments, as they tend to create an in-depth dialectic between people and their homes, drawing on Tijsse’s own travel experiences around Bali. A door, just like a face, acts as both a facade and a threshold to one’s soul, a sort of existential mould where time sculpts the passing of life. Each crack in the wood, just as each wrinkle on the skin consequently becomes a testimony of such a process. See More

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