The Jakarta Post
Samo Rafael as Enma (left) and Tatyana Akman as Yama, in one of the works by Rapha Lisa. Enma and Yama are kings of the underworld according to Japanese and Indian beliefs, respectively. (Atreyu Moniaga Project/File)
Most people believe that the death deity takes the form of a scary, black-winged figure holding a sharp scythe. But through the lens of Rapha Lisa in the Memento Mori fashion editorial, it transforms into colorful figures based on different mythologies, including the Norse and Welsh.
Rapha Lisa stands in front of her works at 'Chrysalis' fashion photography exhibition on Thursday, Sept. 27 at Artotel Thamrin, Central Jakarta. Although based on mythologies and history, Rapha still gives some twists to her 'Memento Mori'. (Atreyu Moniaga Project/File)
Rapha, who is fond of history and fashion, was inspired by her fear when creating the works. “At the age of 25, I feel like I’m running out of time to make artworks,” Rapha said during a press conference for the "Chrysalis" fashion photography exhibition on Thursday in Central Jakarta.
She believed that death is actually the beginning where people meet the death deity. “I want [the death deities] to be beautiful, so I won’t be afraid to meet them.”
Rapha is one of the three photographers from the fifth generation of ST/ART, a class that is part of the Atreyu Moniaga Project photography incubation program.
The Atreyu Moniaga Project is an art community established by illustrator Atreyu Moniaga that offers an annual incubation program for young photographers and artists. For Chrysalis, they have collaborated with Persona Management and all of the behind-the-scenes will be put into an artbook, Chrysalis, with Nin Djani as the editor-in-chief. The event runs for 25 days from Sept. 27 to Oct. 21 at the mezzanine floor of Artotel Thamrin, Central Jakarta.
Yon Beni sits in front of his 'Revelare' photos at the 'Chrysalis' fashion photography exhibition on Thursday, Sept. 27 at Artotel Thamrin, Central Jakarta. (Atreyu Moniaga Project/File)
Photographer Yon Beni, meanwhile, aims to humanize models in honest and melancholy ways in the fine art documentary photography series Revelare.
“I had never taken photos of models before and I thought they were snobbish and arrogant,” Beni said. “But that didn't happen with [the models he shot]. They’re just human beings. They have their own problems and there is more to them than just looking glamorous at parties.”
Meanwhile, photographer Nathanael Moss celebrates the young Jakartans through his Suck Party fashion editorial. “It’s about five close friends who want to attend a party, but it turns out to be awful,” said Nathanael. “So instead of going home, they decide to have fun in the street.”
Nathanael Moss in front of his 'Suck Party' fashion editorial. The photos were shot in places that symbolize Jakarta, including Mangga Besar, West Jakarta. (Atreyu Moniaga Project/File)
Chrysalis is an attempt by Rapha, Beni and Nathanael to be honest through their works. Prior to the exhibition, they used to follow trends instead of their hearts.
“I once did everything Atre [Atreyu Moniaga] asked and I always played 'safe'. When it was finished, I was confused because I kept following him,” Nathanel said.
Beni also spoke of his honesty in Revelare. “It’s about how I talk to myself. When you’re honest, your works will speak,” he said. “Success happens when our work can deliver a message to people.” (kes)