Artivist, observes and reports on developments in the Bali and Indonesian art scenes
Larasati Auctioneers of Jakarta plans in 2020 to conduct its 14th consecutive year of presenting high-quality Balinese art to sell to the international market through its Ubud auctions. The upcoming Feb. 8 sale, called Traditional, Modern and Contemporary Art, at the Larasati Art Space in the Tebesaya Gallery is to feature 81 lots in a myriad of painting styles. Good buys are available for collectors with small to large budgets and the sale would attract the attention of connoisseurs of Balinese painting, along with intermediate and beginner collectors. For those able to make purchases near or below the estimated prices, excellent value-buying opportunities are available.
Genres for sale include the miniature Keliki style, Indo-European paintings, Batuan and Ubud schools, paintings inspired by influential foreigners on Bali, Rudolf Bonnet and Walter Spies, modern and contemporary paintings and works by noted 20th century pioneers of Balinese painting. Sought names include Willem Gerard Hofker, Rudolf Bonnet, Rusli, Arie Smit, Antonio Blanco, Ida Bagus Made Poleng, Ida Bagus Made Togog, Ida Bagus Made Nadera, Dewa Putu Mokoh, Nyoman Gunarsa, Wayan Djudjul, Nyoman Kayun, Dede Edi Supria and Agung Mangu Putra. Open to the public, viewing begins on Feb. 6 at 11 a.m.
For new buyers with limited funds wishing to begin collecting Balinese paintings, the following works are worthy of attention. For a brilliant golden sunset that highlights a beachside ceremony, Lot 756, Upacara, 2012 in the Ubud style of painting by Wayan Supartha is a glowing 70 by 80 centimeter acrylic-on-canvas picture with an estimated value of between Rp 10 million and Rp 13 million. Lot 714, a. Pementasan Tari; b. Pementasan Tari by Made Ocen in the miniature framework of the Keliki style, acrylic-on-paper works, both 16 by 10.5 cm, have estimated prices of between Rp 6 million and Rp 8 million.
Wayan Diana comes from a distinct lineage of the renowned Batuan School of Painting. His father, Wayan Tewang, was a student of the innovator/entrepreneur Nyoman Ngendon. Lot 749, Cerita Trantri, 2016, is an unusual yet beautiful, visually rhythmic picture of an old folktale depicting a cattle herder and his livestock. It comes with an estimated price of between Rp 7 million and Rp 9 million. The Last Supper, 2019 by Diana’s older brother Ketut Sadia, Lot 748, is an exciting adaptation of the Christian religious narrative featuring Balinese Hindu characters and has an estimated price of between Rp 7 million and Rp 9 million.
Three paintings available, lots 777, 778 and 779, are by the most highly prized artist of the historic Ubud School of Painting, Ida Bagus Made Poleng. Lot 779 is one of two paintings of particular interest to connoisseurs of Balinese painting. Harvesting by Ida Bagus Made Poleng is a 77 by 62 cm acrylic-on-canvas picture of a rice harvest that has an estimated price of between Rp 600 million and Rp 800 million. Lot 774 Mengarak Bade by the highly respected painter from the Brahmin family of Batuan, Ida Bagus Made Togog, is a glorious, pulsating 81 by 130 cm acrylic-on-canvas depiction of a royal funeral parade that comes with an estimated value of between Rp 250 million and Rp 350 million.
For buyers with a mid-range budget of between Rp 10 million and Rp 100 million wishing to build upon a collection, the following works may be of interest. Lot 732, Memetik Bunga by renowned painter Ni Gusti Agung Galuh, is a beautiful late afternoon 80 by 60 cm acrylic-on-canvas landscape depiction featuring a lady picking flowers that has an estimated value of between Rp 40 million and Rp 50 million. The flamboyant Spanish-Filipino maestro Antonio Blanco moved to Bali and married Balinese dancer Ni Ronji in 1953, becoming a popular figure in Ubud when it was still a sleepy artists' village. Lot 717, Fantasy with gong: Ode to Michael Jackson by Blanco, comes with provenance from a private collector in the United Kingdom and is a 99 by 58 cm (including frame) mixed-media on paper, accompanied by the artist's label of authenticity and a description of the painting on the back. It has an estimated price of between Rp 75 million and Rp 95 million.
Other good value buys are available, especially if purchased within the estimates. The beautiful Lot 707, Pementasan Calonarang by Ida Bagus Made Togog, depicts the iconic Barong Rangda confrontation in the Calonarang performance, which has an estimated price of between Rp 18 million and Rp 25 million. Nyoman Meja is a highly respected practitioner of the Ubud School of Painting. Lot 709, Cili-cili 1977, is an exceptionally detailed 98 by 40 cm acrylic-on-canvas picture of the ceremonial goddess constructed from old Chinese coins, kepeng, that comes with an estimated value of Rp 20 million and Rp 30 million.
Explicit depictions of sexual encounters are never deemed offensive or pornographic by the Balinese. Rather, they help explain about the nature of life and male and female interaction. Lot 770, Kamasutra 1989 by Wayan Rajin, is an explicit yet humorous 38 by 38 cm ink-on-paper drawing with an estimated value of between Rp 17 million and Rp 25 million. The distinct paintings of iconic Balinese female artist I GAK Murniasih continually gain national and international popularity. Two of the artist's works are available: Musim Semi 2003 and Kasih Sayang 2003. Each has an estimated value of between Rp 80 million and Rp 110 million.
Potential buyers bidding over the phone, absentee bidders, or real-time internet bidders who are unable to attend the preview days or auction are advised to contact Larasati and inquire about the color reproduction accuracy of the images contained in the online catalog to ensure that what they wish to purchase can be realistically appraised. The absence of references to the condition of a lot in the catalog description does not imply that the lot is free from faults or imperfections, therefore condition reports of the works, outlining a painting's current state and whether it has repairs or over-painting, are available upon request.
Provenance, the historical data of a work's previous owners, is also important and is provided. An information guide including before-the-auction, during-the-auction and after-the-auction details, including conditions of business, the bidding process, payment, storage and insurance and shipping of the works, is also available. A buyer's premium is payable by the buyer of each lot at a rate of 22 percent of the hammer price of the lot.
Open to the public at Larasati Art Space on Jl. Jatayu, Ubud, Bali, the auction starts at 2:30 p.m. on Feb. 8. The online catalogue, complete with a guide for prospective buyers, is available at www.larasati.com. (wng)
Feb. 6, 11 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 7, 11 a.m. - 7:30 p.m.
Feb. 8, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Feb. 8, 2:30 p.m.
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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not reflect the official stance of The Jakarta Post.