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Jakarta Post

Chusin Setiadikara: Inventing another realism

  • Carla Bianpoen


Seminyak, Bali   /   Thu, August 27 2009   /  09:50 am

Street boy by Chusin Setiadikara (2009, oil on canvas). JP/Carla BianpoenWhen Chusin Setiadikara’s solo exhibition at the Kendra Gallery in Bali was announced, most people expected he would come with a surprise. His solo of seven years ago brought a breakthrough as he redefined realism amid the hustle and bustle of mainstream contemporary art, insisting realistic appearances did not always refer to one reality but contained a variety of realities.Realism — in the meaning of the portrayal of things as they are seen without embellishment or interpretation — started in Europe and expanded to other parts of the world. It became a powerful tool to halt the flow of time by preserving images on canvas, and it came to dominate the world of art — until the emergence of photography. As photography took over most of the meaning of the realistic mode, abstract art flourished and prevailed. A...