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Mulyana brings underwater world to Hermès window display in Singapore

Muthi Achadiat Kautsar
Muthi Achadiat Kautsar

The Jakarta Post

-  /  Fri, March 8, 2019  /  05:17 pm
Mulyana brings underwater world to Hermès window display in Singapore

Indonesian artist Mulyana puts a spin on the Hermès 2019 theme, "In Pursuit of Dreams", with his latest hand-crocheted installation, "Irama" (rhythm) (Hermès/Yovita Amalia)

An exciting part of going shopping is checking out window displays and seeing the store’s latest offerings or looking for whatever is on sale. Certain stores, however, put a lot of effort into creating artistic window displays to add more value to the experience.

Famed fashion house Hermès, for instance, commissions artists to come up with window displays that attract passersby and shoppers alike. Among the most recent commission by Hermès was a window display at its store at Liat Towers, Singapore.

The commissioned person this time was no other than Indonesian artist Mulyana, who fascinated audiences at last year’s ARTJOG with a 9-meter-tall and 12-m-diameter diamond shaped installation. Titled Sea Remembers, the installation depicted corals and underwater world with crochet images.

Mulyana told The Jakarta Post in an email that his art installation was a spin on the Hermès 2019 theme, “In Pursuit of Dreams”.

In response to the theme, Mulyana continues to explore the shape of coral as the home of Mogus, the main character in his work. Mogus itself is a portmanteau of monster, gurita (octopus) and Sigarantang (Mulyana’s family name).

“In Mogus’ dream, its ideal house is the colorful coral. However, in reality, many coral are dead because of over-exploitation. The dead coral are represented by the white ones at the right side of the main display window, spread among the colorful coral,” said Mulyana of the installation.

Nestled among the coral clusters are a pair of Quicker white sneakers with the Calèche Vitesse and iconic H print, a men’s cap and a Toodoo pochette. A Bolide 45 piques the interest of a hand-crocheted lobster, while the Lanterne d’Hermès sits elegantly on the seabed.Nestled among the coral clusters are a pair of Quicker white sneakers with the Calèche Vitesse and iconic H print, a men’s cap and a Toodoo pochette. A Bolide 45 piques the interest of a hand-crocheted lobster, while the Lanterne d’Hermès sits elegantly on the seabed. (Hermès/Edward Hendricks)

From the home for Mogus, Mulyana also develops his idea further for the installation. He dreams of himself as a musician, using each stitch as musical notes to compose a rhythm to the assembly of the coral dreamscape.

Dreams are perceived as a built-up desire that requires momentum to bring into reality, according to Mulyana. Hence “Irama” (rhythm) was born, conveying a rhythm that he has composed to help make dreams come true.

“Because the success of a rhythm will always be remembered and sung. Just like a dream, it will always be remembered until it can be realized,” Mulyana was quoted as saying in a press release from Hermès Singapore.

A first timer in creating a fashion house window display, Mulyana started working on the installation in November 2018, with completion in late February. He went to Singapore to set up the installation, assisted by a technician and knitter from Yogyakarta. Four more people from Singapore, assigned by Hermès, helped Mulyana’s team set up.

“Hermès [Singapore] saw my work as a solo project that was facilitated by [Singapore-based] Art Porters gallery in Art Central Hong Kong,” said Mulyana about the beginning of his encounter with the brand, “I hope more brands work with artists.”

Read also: Thousands of flowers used to build KAWS sculpture for Dior

Furthermore, Mulyana wrote on Instagram that the installation was to kick off the activities of Mogus Corp in 2019. While he had prepared the installation from the end of 2018 to late February 2019, he was also preparing a solo exhibition in Perth, Australia, in mid-March.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

'Detail' . Baru ketahuan, kalau bidang ruang sangat berpengaruh terhadap penampilan karya. Untuk windows display ukuran kecil sepertinya lebih baik disesuaikan, maksudnya dibuat kecil juga. Tapi apa daya mata pasti lebih lelah dan waktu pengerjaanpun lebih lama, apalagi orang yang mau bantu buatnya pasti ga ada dan pada nyerah duluan. Jadi jendela yang saya isi dengan coral putih sebenarnya kurang puas tapi jadi pembelajaran. So far so goodlah. 😉 . Pengalaman mengerjakan project commision work ini tantangannya adalah bagaimana kita bisa menampilkan produk barang yang ditampilkan dan karya sama kuatnya. Menjadi menarik karena team dari Hermesnya sendiri ikut memikirkan barang yang didisplay agar sesuai tema. . Penasaran dengan aslinya? Bisa lihat langsung karena windows display ini akan dipajang sampai bulan mei nanti. Cheers . . . #HermesWindows #curhatmangmoel #instalation #artwork #themogus #mulyana #project #windowdisplay #hermès #singapore #textileoftheday #fiberart #2019

A post shared by Mulyana (@mangmoel) on

“The challenge in working on this commissioned project is presenting the brand’s collection and our work at the same level of strength, [and] it becomes interesting because the team from Hermès also thinks carefully about which items to display to suit the [window display] theme,” wrote Mulyana.

Among the items Hermès chose for the installation were a pair of Quicker white sneakers with the Calèche Vitesse and iconic H print, a men’s cap and a Toodoo pochette. Also nestled amid the crochet coral is a Bolide 45 handbag that sits next to a hand-crocheted lobster and a Lanterne d’Hermès that sits elegantly on the seabed.

The imagery of this underwater universe that Mulyana has created is completed by a range of fashion accessories and Cape Cod timepieces inspired by the house’s iconic Ch'ine d’Ancre motifThe imagery of this underwater universe that Mulyana has created is completed by a range of fashion accessories and Cape Cod timepieces inspired by the house’s iconic Ch'ine d’Ancre motif (Hermès/Edward Hendricks)

In a statement, Hermès also lists a range of fashion accessories, Cape Cod timepieces and a set of Bleu d’Ailleurs tableware among collections displayed in the installation.

"Irama" (Rhythm) will be on display until May 21 at Hermès Liat Towers, 541 Orchard Road.