ISA Art & Design is honoured to present Suksesi, an exhibition of Indonesian female artists featuring works from three distinct generations. From the seventeen participating artists, there are four pioneer female artists: Arahmaiani, Dolorosa Sinaga, I Gak Murniasih and Rita Widagdo, four mid-career artists: Cempaka Surakusumah x Amelia Adysaputra, Fika Ria Santika, Prilla Tania, and Yaya Sung, as well as nine emerging female artists: Anastasia
Astika, AY Sekar F, Cynthia Delaney, Dini Nur Aghnia, Etza Meisyara, Evi Pangestu, Luh Gede, Talitha Maranila, and Tara Kasenda.
This exhibition will launch on the 20th of March, marking ISA Art and Design’s new space’s inauguration while celebrating Women’s Day and the gallery’s first anniversary. ISA Art and Design’s new space would be located at Wisma BNI46, presenting to you a white-cube style gallery with floor to ceiling windows and a seven-meter ceiling. Located at the heart of Jakarta City, Sudirman area, this space ensures that we would be able to present quality exhibitions to wider audiences as well as contribute to the vibrancy of the city.
About the exhibition itself, Suksesi highlights the ongoing plight of female, and specifically, female artists in occupying creative space. The issues that appear in female artists artworks range from art-specific marginalization, -such as the fight against the diminution of female creative expression into exclusively the realm of crafts and kitsch. It also includes broader issues which impacts are reflected in the art, -such as the resistance against governmental policing of feminine bodies.
It is essential to be aware that “female artists” are not a single homogenous unit whose experience, background, and concerns are exactly the same. Reducing them to a stereotype or an agglomeration of tragic stories is a slippery slope towards saviorism and patronizing behavior. Therefore, one should not entail or demand female artists’ artwork to solely serve a political agenda for it to be considered beneficial
to women’s betterment in art.
Female artists are diverse individuals whose stories reflect, crossover, resonate, and influence their community and beyond. Highlighting and giving space to each unique story, including narratives that are inward-looking and intuitive, creates a positive impact on the community and enriches the recognition of female artists. Supporting the individual contributes to the collective interest, and vice versa. Additionally, looking at female artists as individuals gives a nuanced understanding of their plight as a collective. Seemingly non-political artistic and formalistic exploration is just as important because the female identity should not be constructed merely by what it is “against”, but also everything it is “about”. To express that “about” is also to explore the thoughts, aesthetic and artistic sensibilities, imagination and interests of these female artists.
The fact that feministic call-for-actions are still relevant today does not mean that the effort done by earlier generations are made in vain. One reason we can demand accountability regarding current issues is because of the insistence of female artists in previous generations. Moreover, the contemporary female narratives are not just repetitions from the past, but continuations from what has previously been paved. By looking at artworks from artists spanning across different generations, we hope to deduce the prevailing challenges, generation-specific visual expressions, and progresses that has been attained by female artists in art.
This exhibition does it’s best to observe what these artists from different generations find relevant, what drives them to create. The mediums that best expresses their sensibility; and try to find formal, contextual, and conceptual commonalities and overlaps between the diverse artworks. Finally, this exhibition hopes to hypothesize or synthesize the continuing narrative in Indonesian female artists’ works in accordance with
their shared historical moments and cultural experiences.