Purity takes on various forms at ICAD
Peeking into the empty bedroom, an outline of two people laying down facing away from each other is clearly imprinted on the surface of the mattress. Eyes would be immediately drawn to the fact that one bedside lamp is turned off while the other is on, before then noticing the various items carefully placed on each side, presumably belonging to the room’s occupants.
Next to the lamp that is turned off, there is a Quran and a phone, as well as a prayer mat that lies on the floor. On the other side, the lamp brightly shines onto a copy of Paulo Coelho’s Adultery.
The room is an installation by independent filmmaker Teddy Soeriaatmadja entitled A Place for Us to Dream, with a description next to the entrance door explaining the work as a take on the purity of a relationship.
“Being together does not mean you share the same hopes and dreams. Sometimes, it just means being together,” a quote on the plaque says.
When asked whether his work depicted a disconnection within the relationship, Teddy replied saying it’s an open interpretation.
“They’re still in the same room,” Teddy told The Jakarta Post.
Teddy, along with over 50 other local artists created works to interpret Murni (Pure), the theme for the eighth annual Indonesian Contemporary Art and Design (ICAD) exhibition in Jakarta.
Opened on Oct. 4, the artworks are set to be displayed until Nov. 15 all through the ground floor of the Grandkemang Hotel in South Jakarta.
Based on his background as a film director, Teddy sought to cre- ate an installation that would illustrate themes on relationships, which he also explores extensively in his films.
“I wanted to make something more or less, within half a second, someone would see this, and visually, it already tells a story,” Teddy said, adding that it was his first ever installation.
Teddy is featured in the ‘Special Appearance’ zone of the exhibition together with filmmaker Gianni Fajri, actor Reza Rahadian, sketch artist Anto Motulz and graffiti artist Darbotz.
Curator Bambang Toko said he had begun working on the exhibition in May, working with a team to finalize a theme and the artist line up, which is categorized into different zones.
One of the unique elements in designing the gallery is adapting to the setting, he said, which had to mesh well with the hotel layout and the flow of visitors.
“What came to be considered was how the artwork would not disturb hotel visitors. The second is then the relationship with the theme itself: What is pure?” Bambang said.
Denny R. Priyatna sought to question purity itself in his work entitled Appalstered (Appalling + Upholstered Furniture). A UK-trained product designer, Denny explored the themes of flaws illustrated through a combination of photographs and furniture.
Several images of scars and wounds hang on the wall behind two pieces of furniture sitting on the floor. Straying away from the purity principle in modern product design that strives to focus on the object’s functionality, Denny created a chair to look diseased. The bench next to it, meanwhile, may look plain, but slashes on the surface open up as someone sits down, revealing inside what looks like raw flesh.
“I wanted to show that humans and products can be damaged, and from there, to try to process from that impurity and imperfection, so that people can be aware and people may be able to respond to what we are used to seeing in something that is not pure,” Denny said.
The 27-year-old designer is featured in the ‘Statement Exhibition’ zone along with 20 other artists, such as Ary Indra, Eka Sofyan, Julia Sarisetiati, Mice Misrad, Oky Rey Montha and Wedhar Riyadi.
Creative Economy Agency (Bekraf ) head Triawan Munaf praised the craftsmanship of the participating artists. He encouraged the public to support the arts in order to nurture a process of creativity to commerce.
“In addition to keeping the purity in art, it must also have economic value,” Triawan said.
Art of dreaming:
An installation by independent filmmaker Teddy Soeriaatmadja entitled “A Place for us to Dream” is displayed at the Indonesian Contemporary Art and Design (ICAD) expo at the Grandkemang Hotel in South Jakarta. The exhibition runs from Oct. 4 through Nov. 15.