Tag Archives: Muhlis Lugis

JIMB#2 Jogja International Miniprint Biennale

jimb2-at-galeri-soemardja-bandung-image-jimb2                          The Opening of JIMB#2 at Galeri Soemardja, Bandung

One of the highlights of Jogja Art Weeks, a month-long plethora of events held during June in Yogyakarta was the 2nd Jogja International Miniprint Biennale (JIMB#2). Emphasizing the exceptional skill of participating artists working in an array of print making mediums, the biennale was on display 24 May – 10 June at Sangkring Art Project.

In an era where new media and media exploration are often praised as the demigods of ‘art now’, conventional art forms such as printmaking are often overshadowed. The travelling exhibition, held also at Bentara Budaya Solo 1-7 September, recently ran from 20-28 October at Galeri Soemardja, Bandung.

“Art can be now made with the help of artisans, machines, or other objects and intermediaries. In the current art environment the artist’s hands are no longer considered significant in carrying on the struggles of the soul,” said artist, gallerist and JIMB#2 Jury Chairman Agung Kurniawan.

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“To return to the use of skilled hands is a kind of pilgrimage, and perhaps also an important turning point.”

The travelling exhibition featured one hundred and twenty-one mini prints by 110 finalists included 5 winners and 11 works from 5 guest artists from twenty-eight countries. The biannual event, themed ‘Homo Habilis – Handy Man’ serves as both a mini print exhibition and competition for Indonesian and international artists.

The works range within the four conventional printmaking techniques, relief printing (woodcut, linocut, rubber cut, collagraphy), intaglio (etching, drypoint, photo etching, aquatint, mezzotint), planograph (lithography), and serigraphy (silk screen and stencil). The maximum size of the works, printed on paper, are 20 x 20cm unframed, and 28 x 28cm framed.

bulgaria_dimo-kolibarov-three-best-works-2                 “Cycle: The Diary of a Child – the Golden Fish” – Dimo Kolibarov

“The mini print Biennale was planned from two perspectives, the desire to offer a unique graphic arts forum, and to follow the dynamic in the current constellation of visual art,” said JIMB#2 Director Syahrizal Pahlevi.

“The Jury agreed on the theme “Homo Habilis ” – dubbed the ‘handy man’ – being the first documented pre-historic human to use stone tools, to accompany our question, “How far does contemporary art and contemporary life underappreciate ‘the strength and miracle of the hand’?” Pahlevi said.

Taking into account some of the latest issues in the world of printmaking, JIMB#2 invited five guest artists, two Indonesian and three international artists, including one of the winners from the first JIMB in 2014, Lidija Antanasijevic (Serbia, UK) to participate. The artists were chosen because of their international reputations, Art Werger (USA), important contributions as print makers, Setiawan Sabana (Indonesia), the introduction of popular technical innovations-Kitchen Litho, Emilie Aizier (France), and widely acknowledged dedication to printmaking, Yamyuli Dwi Imam (Indonesia).

canada_deborah-chapman-three-best-works-2                         Print by Canadian Artist Deborah Chapman

JIMB#2 participant Muhlis Lugis is a Yogyakarta based artist who since 2013 has been forging international markets with his relief print wood cut works, being represented by Vin Gallery, Ho Chi Ming City, Vietnam at international art fairs Art Taipei 2015, and Asia Contemporary Art Show 2015 in Hong Kong.

“To crave the wood block ready for printing 18.5 x 14.5 cm in size, requires one day,” said the Indonesian Art Institute (ISI) Yogyakarta graduate, who was born in South Sulawesi in 1987. “The block is then covered with oil based ink to which paper is applied and next sandwiched between layers of felt, ready for the printing press. The process appears simplistic, yet to produce the quality works requires patience and skill.”

“Mini prints demand to be observed up close,” said Kurniawan. “Without regarding them at close range and looking carefully we miss the essence of these works; the line and textures that shape a narrative.”

italy_paolo-ciampini-three-best-works-2                                   “The Woman” – Paolo Ciampini

“In JIMB#2 the craftsmanship in printmaking is visually prominent,” he said, commenting on the high standard of work in the exhibition. “Especially in the work of Italian artist Paolo Ciampini, that reveals microscopic lines of extraordinary detail.”

Within Ciampini’s winning etching work “The Woman” the artist utilizes the cross hatching technique in scoring the steel printing plate, emphasizing the naked woman’s form. “Gate V” by Polish artist Weronica Siupka, another JIMB#2 winner, depicts a brick wall and paved entryway that too reveals remarkable dedication to achieving extraordinarily fine lines.

Bulgarian artist Dimo Kolibarov, however prefers the colorful etch aquatint technique. The strength of “Cycle: The Diary of a Child – the Golden Fish” is both in the narrative, along with the acute hand skills. In the work a child embraces a large golden fish while above floats various images and forms, akin to the child’s imaginative ideas.

20161021_120513                     JIMB#2 Participant and Yogyakarta based artist Muhlis Lugis

“Most of the best works in this exhibition are by international artists, reflecting, unfortunately, the decline in printmaking in Indonesia today. JIMB#2 is a warning sign for the development of printmaking in Indonesia,” Kurniawan adds. “We are fortunate to have such an exhibition where we can learn a great deal from the examples of other printmakers and apply this knowledge to our own future development of printmaking.”

http://www.jogjaminiprints.com

20161021_120624                                           Muhlis Lugis’ Studio

Words: Richard Horstman

 

 

Opening Doors On Indonesian Art History Discourse – YOS 2016

20161022_163626Leading Indonesian artist Entang Wiharso shares with the audience about his creative journey at Black Goat Studio during the YOS 2016 Focus Tours.

 

As a platform for dialogue and collaboration the annual Yogyakarta Open Studio (YOS) program supports the development of new knowledge and documentation on contemporary art studio practice. It provides the public and arts community with exposure to an array of artists working in a variety of fields at various stages in their career.

Artist studios’ are essential sites of engagement revealing details of the creative practice that cannot be seen elsewhere. They give insight into an artist’s environment and state of mind, highlights with whom they interact and their strategic approaches to developing their careers. Beginning in 2013, each year Yogyakarta based artists are invited to open their studios while examining a specific theme. YOS 2016’s theme is “Artists Engagement With Art History”.

20161021_120624Lugis Studio, the creative hub and printing making facility of artists Muhlis Lugi open to the public during YOS 2016.

 

As the study of the development of the visual arts, art history involves understanding the social, political, and intellectual context of art in relation to its cultural origins. Art historians attempt to answer in historically specific ways questions that relate to style, meaning, visual and discursive function, and artistic practices.

“Indonesian art is fully part of the global art scene, so its historical analysis – its development and writing – are more pressing than ever before,” said YOS Director Christine Cocca.

“We selected art history as this year’s theme because of the pivotal, but perhaps neglected position it has in Indonesian art discourse.”

“YOS 2016 wishes to jump-start the conversation about qualification and look at how aspiring Indonesia art historians go about gaining the education they need in a country that still doesn’t offer a degree in art history,” she adds.

20161022_133106Australian artist Sally Smart describes some of her creative processes with the audience at Studio Sally Smart during the YOS 2016 Focus Tours.

 

Running 19 -23 October YOS 2016 collaborates with a group of local and international art historians whose work engages with Indonesian contemporary art. An essential element aligning artist, practice, thought and audience, a series of expert led Focus Tours giving visitors the opportunity for in-depth discussions about the artists’ work and studio practice is offered 22 & 23 October from 1-5 pm.

Participating art historians are Agus Burhan and Suwarno Wisetrotomo from Yogyakarta, Leonor Veiga, Portugal, Mary-Louise Totton, USA, Amanda Katherine Rath, Germany, Wulan Dirgantoro and Astrid Honold both based in Germany and Indonesia. Together they have developed a series of interviews with participating studios exploring artists’ engagement with the production, function and impact of the discipline on their practice. Seventeen artist’s studios situated around Yogyakarta will be open during YOS 2016.

“Indonesia has an extensive art historical record, but little art historical discourse is being done,” said Leonor Veiga, a PhD candidate at Leiden University whose dissertation The Third Avant-Garde: Recalling Tradition in Contemporary Southeast Asian Art analyses how contemporary art practices negotiate traditional arts in the region.

“Curators work reaches more artists than work of art historians which is problematic, leading to artists being cultural orphans with little understanding where their work may fit in art historical terms,” Veiga adds. “Grassroots initiatives like YOS 2016 create space for debate, and contribute to open discussions about essential issues.”

20161021_210858Suwarno Wisetromo, Entang Wiharso, Heri Dono, Fendry Ekel and Mikke Sustanto engaged in discussions on issues concerning Indonesian Art history at RJ Katamsi Galeri, ISI Yogakarta as a part of the YOS 2016 program.

 

“Through YOS artist’s studios became more alive and accessible; far from the image of mysterious,” said Suwarno Wisetromo, a professor in the Faculty of Fine Arts at the Indonesian Institute of the Arts (ISI) Yogyakara, and curator at the National Gallery of Indonesia, who pursed his PhD in History with a focus on art to try and achieve comparable qualifications.

“Participating studios have to work together with historians, conduct research and create relevant works. The artists are challenged to become the initiator. Providing an alternative ‘space’ and ‘approach’ to existing events such as the Jogja Bienale, Art Jog, and gallery exhibitions that are outside of curatorial and commercial platforms makes YOS significant, ”Suwarno adds.

Reflecting on sustainability Astrid Honold, who divides her time between Berlin and Yogyakarta said, “As a young country, Indonesia, very understandably has other priorities. Art, in a way, as important and existential as it might be, is a luxurious occupation. Other things come first. But then you get the market which thinks you can just jump over centuries of development of thought. Well you cannot.”

20161020_161205Open to the public during YOS 2016, Studio Jumaldi Alfi, featuring the work of well-known Indonesian international artist Jumaldi Alfi.

 

“I am excited to be participating in YOS 2016,” said Heri Dono, the founder of the Kalahan Studio and one of Indonesia’s most prominent international names. “YOS is important to the development of contemporary art in Yogyakarta.”

“Our priority is to examine issues in the art world through the artist’s eyes and experiences. Importantly, YOS lets the artists set the terms,” Cocca adds. Complete with online information, maps, and a program of expert guided studio tours YOS not only supports the development of art and cultural tourism in Yogyakarta, yet the Indonesian creative economies sector as well.

Participating artists include Endang Lestari, Sujud Dartanto, Entang Wiharso, Theresia Agustina Sitompul, Nia Fliam, Agus Ismoyo, Fendry Ekel, Deni Rahman, Lenny Ratnasari Weichert, Ivan Sagita, Komroden Haro, Lugas Syllabus, Noor Ibrahim, Eddi Prabandono, Sally Smart, Heri Dono, Jumaldi Alfi, Muhlis Lugis and Desrat Fianda.

yos-discussion-at-studio-kalahan-heri-dono-image-courtesy-yos-2016YOS Director Christine Cocca and Heri Dono giving an art presentation, a pre YOS 2016 event at Dono’s Kalahan Studios. Image courtesy YOS.

http://www.yogyakartaopenstudio.com

 

Words & Images: Richard Horstman