The present lot, Interior is a penetrating look at domestic life - two starkly contrasting scenarios are presented before viewers. With Interior, Masriadi marks his credentials as a keen observer of human life; his penetrative understanding of human psychology and social behaviour is presented in a witty but yet understated, slightly sarcastic humour.
Executed in a landscape format, Interior is one of the larger paintings completed by the artist in the first couple of years of his professional career as a painter. Power relations between individuals interest Masriadi very much. Many of his paintings are about people and their relationships with one another - relationships that see one party dominate over another; relationships where individuals are defeated or suppressed by others; relationships where individuals come together for the sake of collective empowerment.
In Interior, family life is the framing situation for the unfolding of two different scenarios - one that is perhaps more reflective of daily reality than the other. The painting reveals the interiors of two different homes. On the left of the painting, a middle-aged man with receding hairline and a conspicuous pot-belly is pictured limply holding onto the reluctant hands of a woman with a big broad teeth-baring smile whilst uttering words of gentle persuasion - "Jangan gicu ... dong!" (Don't be like this). To these flirtatious words, the woman is obviously unimpressed. Her mouth remains in a pout and her defensive deportment with one arm raised is indicative of her non-committal state of mind towards the party opposite her. Yet, the male protagonist does not seem to fathom this, and remains in a state of blithe unconsciousness.
Compared to the unremarkable interaction between these two figures, a scene of debauchery is pictured on the right. The sole male protagonist here, flanked on either side by two servile and seemingly willing partners exudes machismo. All three of them garbed in nightgowns and underwear, the interest in this unfolding narrative is directed at the anticipated night ahead; this is clearly revealed in the thought bubble emanating from the male protagonist - "sek-asik" (sex is great). An air of expectancy prevails, but what is going to happen is unknown to anyone of us.
The contrasting scenarios that Masriadi presents in Interior speak of obvious and hidden realities as well as untold or explicit desires. Is any one of these five protagonists in Interior really getting what he or she wants? And for those who are obviously not succeeding, e.g. the male protagonist in the extreme left of the painting, are they destined to remain so forever? Though the appearances of things speak volubly, it seems like Masriadi also wants to remind viewers that situations are temporal in nature and are always subject to change.