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Week 11 New Internationalism & The Beginning of Contemporary Art in Indonesia


DiscussionTuesday, 10 Nov 2015 in Salihara Lobby

New Internationalism & The Beginning of Contemporary Art in Indonesia

New Internationalism is not a new phenomenon exisisted in many international art forums. The topic has been discussed lately covered art in historically a important exhibitions and commercially a driven art exhibitions. At the moment, in Salihara, Agung Hujatnika Jennong and Enin Supriyanto, ITB graduates and curators led the discussion and brought the audience in understanding what the new internationalism is deeper. As the content of the discussion, Biennale is questioned: institution or industry?

Biennale is a regular exhibition held in every two years. Since 1990, more than hundreds biennale has been holding in many cities such as Sao Paulo, Liverpool, Venice, Berlin, Sydney, New York, Shanghai, and Jakarta. Some of Bienalle are identical to big exhibition like blockbuster, creating stereotype as institutional exhibition. Most people assume that Biennale is a nonprofit oriented exhibition, meanwhile its main purpose was to create a new market for fine art in Europe. Previously, Bienalle was a commercial exhibition where the committee took profit for sold art work. Until 1973, the committee of Venice Biennale decided to remove marketing division because of demonstrations happened against the trading in Biennale. Hence, Biennale focused for being experimental art lab and transformed into contemprary art ritual held regularly.

The emergence of Biennale marked the birth of contemporary art in Indonesia. Biennale has been holding in Indonesia since 1970. The first biennale in Indonesia is Jakarta Biennale held by Jakarta Arts Council, followed by Yogyakarta, Bandung, and Bali. In fact, the term of contemporary art appeared when Gregorius Sidharta used Seni Patung Kontemporer (Contemporary Sculpture) as the title of his exhibition. In 1974, Indonesian artists did protest to the Pameran Besar Seni Lukis Indonesia (Exhibition of Indonesia Paintings) held by Jakarta Arts Council, known as Black December. Then, in 1975, those young artists held exhibition themed Pameran Seni Rupa Baru (The New Arts Exhibition). At the time, they also brought a manifestation up stated about the New Indonesian Arts.

Contemporary art as the new style influenced by modernism opened a new perception analysis and creation of Indonesian arts. There is no gap between any art disciplines like painting, sculpture, graphic, theater, dance, music, anarchy, and even political action. Contemporary art in Indonesia has desire and spirit in moralistic related to social and politic dimension. It is a sexy topic talked in media mass today. Indeed, it fully supports the novelty, innovation, originality, and experiment as its basic elements. Through this art invention, human need can be fulfilled physically and psychologically in various color. Besides, contemporary art increase the popularity of artists because in every single art work created, the artist name always be included.


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