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Aucky Hinting: A full-time doctor and part-time artist

  • Ika Krismantari

    The Jakarta Post

Jakarta | Wed, June 17, 2015 | 11:04 am
Aucky Hinting: A full-time doctor and part-time artist

Courtesy of Aucky Hinting

As a doctor or an artist, Aucky Hinting is a creator.

In the medical world, his name has always been associated with popular dangdut singer Inul Darastita.

Aucky'€™s popularity took off after he successfully made the dangdut diva pregnant through the in-vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure in 2008.

This success ignited a boom in IVF treatment in the country with the number of IVF patients doubling after Inul announced her pregnancy, a trend that Melbourne-based scientist Mulyoto Pangestu referred to as the '€œInul Impact'€.

But long before Inul, Aucky had been a reproductive system expert for years.

Born in the East Java capital Surabaya 61 years ago, Aucky discovered an interest in chemistry and biology when he was in high school. He decided to go to medical school because the challenge to enroll there was bigger than that of other schools.

'€œI was also inspired by my friend'€™s parent, who happened to be a doctor. It looked like a very respectable profession,'€ Aucky said.

His interest in the reproductive system grew when he was a medical school student at Airlangga University in Surabaya in the late 1970s.

'€œAt the same time, I had a senior who learned about andrology in Belgium,'€ he said.

Andrology is the branch of medicine concerned with diseases and conditions that affect the male reproductive system. One of the ways to deal with these conditions is through the IVF procedure.

JP/P.J. LeoJP/P.J. Leo

After graduating in 1979, he decided to learn more about andrology and the reproductive system because he considered this field of medicine a new challenge.

A good opportunity to expand his knowledge in the field came when he received a scholarship to study the human reproductive system in the US in the early 1980s.

'€œBefore I went back, I attended a seminar on IVF, which at that time was still being developed in the US,'€ Aucky recalled, detailing how he became further interested in learning about IVF.

A few years later, his dream came true when he received a scholarship to undertake a PhD program in Belgium to study more about IVF, also known as Assisted Reproductive Technology.

'€œI was so lucky to be able to study in an institution where I was given the freedom to use my creativity and to use the technology,'€ he said.

Having returned to Indonesia, Aucky now dedicates himself to lecturing at his alma mater and leading several IVF labs in Indonesia. These pursuits have made him one of the country'€™s leading figures in the field. He also works in a hospital in Surabaya.

Apart from being a respected doctor, Aucky is also an artist. He recently displayed his artwork at an exhibition in Jakarta.

JP/P.J. LeoJP/P.J. Leo

Titled '€œArt of the Art'€, with the last word referring to Assisted Reproductive Technology, the exhibition showcased different artworks presented through different media '€” from paintings to art installations.

Though presented through different mediums they all delivered the same message by embodying the imagination of Aucky in the process of assisting human creation.

Through his artwork, Aucky says he wants to communicate the idea that technology is nothing without humans.

 '€œThat'€™s why I always express that these tools and technology are one inseparable thing from humans, which can end up in pregnancy,'€ he said. '€œ[It is] as if I am trying to humanize these technologies.'€

Aucky'€™s paintings are filled with diagrams and words explaining in detail the process of assisted reproduction.

His interest in art developed when he was studying in Belgium.

'€œWhen I was on a break, I always visited fine arts museums there,'€ said Aucky, whose favorite artists include Salvador Dali and Jean-Michel Basquiat.

Aucky later became an art enthusiast, regularly visiting art exhibitions and collecting artworks.

The urge to create appeared after he failed to buy a painting due to an unreasonable asking price.  

'€œI felt I was being challenged to create my own painting,'€ he said.

Aucky decided to start small. With markers and a sketchbook, he started drawing representations of his imagination about his profession in 2007.

Surprisingly, Aucky'€™s sketches received a warm response from his artist friends, who encouraged him to paint on canvas.

So began Aucky'€™s journey in painting, which has since become for him a cathartic experience.

'€œIt is like I can forget all the problems that I have,'€ he said.

As an artist, Aucky feels his mission is to communicate science and technology to a wider public.

'€œWith art, science and technology will no longer be kept in a high tower or a gold cage, but they can be appreciated more by the public,'€ he said.

Aucky is planning another exhibition with a similar theme to be presented in Surabaya. '€œI'€™m planning for a solo exhibition with a new theme maybe in 2017 or 2018'€ he said.   

Every day, he begins his medical activities at 7 a.m., teaching, attending meetings and doing consultations.

He admitted that he turned into an artist during his spare time.

But at all times '€” either as a doctor or an artist '€” Aucky plays the same role as a creator with one part of him creating artworks and another part helping to midwife the creation of human beings.

When asked to choose which profession he liked the most '€” between doctor and artist '€” Aucky said that he could not.

'€œIt should be both. I can'€™t just pick one. Based on chronological order, then doctor first and artist second.'€