• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 2380

    Southeast Asian Modern and Contemporary Art

    25 November 2007, Hong Kong

  • Lot 3

    BUDI KUSTARTO (b. Indonesia 1972)

    Untuk (For)

    Price Realised  


    BUDI KUSTARTO (b. Indonesia 1972)
    Untuk (For)
    signed and dated 'BUDI KUSTARTO 2005' (upper right); signed and dated again and titled (on the reverse)
    oil and acrylic on canvas
    55 1/8 x 78 3/4 (140 x 200 cm.)

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    Budi has worked extensively on sculptures, literally casting himself into his work. His experience in this area makes him sensitive to space, especially if a sculpture is to be located there. He believes that the space surrounding a sculpture is integral to completing the work. The space gives definition to the sculpture and the sculpture adds value to the space. This synergy that he has derived from his art finds representation in his paintings. The canvas has become reassigned space for his work. Again, he uses himself as his model depicted on the canvas. Compared to his sculptures, this medium allows him to be more expressive in the details captured on canvas. The weight of his sculptures suggested in the paintings by his modeled stances often reacting to gravity. Untuk (For) indicates this sensibility but more importantly, Budi thinks of the reassigned spaces in the canvases as 'illusory spaces, locations of a number of images of the self. This way we will reach the next subject, which is about the bodies on canvases themselves that put limits on them.' (Rizki A. Zaelani, 'Budi: Curatorial Preface' in budi, Nadi Gallery, Jakarta, 2005, exhibition catalogue, p. 28.). Therein lies the artist's attempt at defining the space in a two-dimensional format rather than three-dimensional.

    Budi's concentration on the colour 'green' serves beyond the palette. It takes on a bigger role without much effort. 'Without formulating any certain meaning and attaching it to the colour green, Budi shows its meaning. The colour is metonymic; it stimulates our activity to show a variety of associations, a number of hybrid references, all about the colour green, based on our own experiences. Green is a quality of colour and it is also about one's experience; it is about nature and culture at once. The meaning of green is therefore given as to a text. A text gets a meaning through a delay of manifesting a meaning. Thus a text is radically symbolic, it connects a number of networks of meanings, to someone, from what has been or has been known by him, to what will be or will be revealed to him. His choice of the monochromatic colour is his way to keep in focus and maintain intensity. Behind this, there is a will to widen his appreciation and contemplation of life.' (Rizki A. Zaelani, 'Budi: Curatorial Preface' in budi, Nadi Gallery, Jakarta, 2005, exhibition catalogue, p. 28.)
    On a larger context, Budi's works encourage creative contemplation. The artist asks about the personal role within the artistic environment. His placement of the human figure within the limitations of the canvas space is indicative of the limitation of life in general. Having said that, his works are not definitive but rather, provocative.


    Jakarta, Indonesia, Nadi Gallery, The solo exhibition by Budi Kustarto, 9-21 March 2005, exhibition catalogue p. 22 (illustrated).