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Technology makes ARTJOG all the merrier

Sri Wahyuni

The Jakarta Post

Yogyakarta  /  Fri, May 11, 2018  /  09:52 am
Technology makes ARTJOG all the merrier

Waves by Ronal Ventura (JP/Tarko Sudiarno)

Opened on May 4 and set to run until June 4, this year’s festival – the 11th so far – presents more than 100 artworks by 54 domestic and foreign artists.

The festival’s theme this year is “Enlightenment: Towards Various Future”, and it features a beautiful arrangement of artworks, accentuated and enhanced by the utilization of new lighting, projection and sound technology.

Some of the works of art are attached to the walls, while others are hanging from the ceilings of the exhibition rooms or are just put on the floor.

“We started to seriously work with technology for ARTJOG since 2015,” event curator Bambang Witjaksono recently told The Jakarta Post at the Jogja National Museum, where ARTJOG is being held.

Bambang said he had the idea on employing technology during the 2015 ARTJOG, because at the time there had been no big-scale art events that optimized the use of new media in Indonesia.

He added that, during the initial stage, the technology was just used as it was. Projectors, for example, previously were used just like they were used in a business presentation.

Apricots from Damascus by Atif AkinApricots from Damascus by Atif Akin (JP/Tarko Sudiarno)

“But now, the participating artists can ask for more specific requirements regarding, for example, the lumens, so they will be able to present the details of their respective works perfectly,” Bambang said.

More detailed requirements on the projectors make it possible for artists to display their artworks on exhibition walls without losing their artistic values.

The same is the case with the use of videos. The artists can now ask for more specific resolutions to be synchronized with the media they use as well as the picture they want to present.

Thanks to that, Bambang said, ARTJOG had, for the last few years, been receiving support and sponsorships from technology-based companies, including those producing video, lighting, sound systems and LCD projectors.

Bambang added that there were at least seven works that used projectors for their display during this year’s festival, not mentioning those using video, sound, special lighting or censor technologies.

For example, an artwork called Reflex by Setu Legi and Gatot Danar Sulistiyanto involves a multichannel spatial sound projection, special lighting, a mirror and canvas on PVC pipes. This artwork involves sound frequencies aimed at influencing the spectators to create a specific reaction.

Pernyataan Tidak Tertulis (Unwritten Statement) by Bandu DarmawanPernyataan Tidak Tertulis (Unwritten Statement) by Bandu Darmawan (JP/Tarko Sudiarno)

“Technology has become an inseparable part of ARTJOG,” Bambang said.

Technology, Bambang added, was also needed to manage the use of electricity in the three-story exhibition building, were the electricity supply is divided into three sections, one for each floor.

With such an arrangement, the organizer can calculate and distribute the power supply for the best result.

“For the electric pump used in Batu Bernapas (Breathing Stone), for example, we have to know exactly how much power it needs and whether it will overheat when operated continuously. All of these things have to be carefully calculated,” Bambang said, referring to Agung Tato Suryanto’s work.

Bambang has high hopes that technology can be put to greater use at future festivals.

“Maybe we will be able to use technology that we currently do not know about, such as holograms, for example,” he said.

Meanwhile, Shimizu Tomoya, country manager of leading technology company PT Epson Indonesia, concurred, saying ARTJOG provided space for new ideas in art, where someone can find various interdisciplinary art presentations.

“ARTJOG 2018 proves that projectors can be applied in various fields for various purposes,” Tomoya said.