Handiwirman's experience with creating three-dimensional works has put him in good stead, other than giving his two-dimensional paintings a more tactile quality, he has stripped these materials of their referential context and gifting new perspective to these objects found in his works. This creative philosophy has proven to be provocative and engaged many who have seen his work, and his counterparts from the Kelompok Seni Rupa Jendela group (literally translated to be 'Window Art Collective'), in eager discussion. Their exhibition Membuka Kemungkinan (Opening Possibilities) in 2000 was hotly debated by the arts community. 'In short, the works were considered decadent for their facts of deficiency in aesthetic values, and at the same time, deviating out of the socio-political representation, which at that time became the mainstream tendency in Indonesian art practice.' (Agung Hujatnikajennong, 'The Spectre in a Painting' in Apa-apanya dong?, Nadi Gallery, Jakarta, 2004, exhibition catalogue, p. 24.) This distinction from other 'mainstream' artists has been advantageous for Handiwirman, his style injecting a fresh perspective in the contemporary visual aesthetic. His use of regular everyday materials including cotton, human hair, plastic wrap, wood etc., sees him repositioning the role of the material in a manner contrary to convention in his works. This unusual reading of materials is perhaps indicative of his likewise unique work method. He thinks more in pictures rather than in words, using this mental visual to map out the meaning of his work. His titles too are meant to challenge the viewer's perception of the work, often misleading rather than leading the viewer's interpretation of the work. This motive encourages the viewer to decide independently the relevance of the work to him/her.
Interestingly, Object no. 2: mental series is a work almost in direct opposition to the artist's above methodology. Whilst the work seemingly represents his everyday materials of human hair and cotton, it is painted using acrylic on canvas, thereby fusing the tactile qualities of the said materials into one with the canvas, losing the three-dimensionality of his earlier works. 'Now, through painting, he wishes to re-portray and re-present his three-dimensional objects on canvases through a mimetic method. he is being tested by his own demand to use his craftsmanship as a tool to transfer the idea of mental perception drawn from an object into 'another object', namely painting.' (Agung Hujatnikajennong, 'The Spectre in a Painting' in Apa-apanya dong?, Nadi Gallery, Jakarta, 2004, exhibition catalogue, p. 25 and 26.) The painting becomes his three-dimensional object hence with his focus on making somewhat realistic renditions of his everyday materials but still re-evaluating their representational roles. Though the subjects do not show depth, they should be approached with particular visual perspective. Like in Object no. 2: mental series, 'the objects look more to be absurd, strange, yet at the same time: arrogant and elegant, as if they refused to be recognized. Viewers are being asked to look at those objects as something melting on the flat shape, without demanding to know them as a three-dimensional object.' (Agung Hujatnikajennong, 'The Spectre in a Painting' in Apa-apanya dong?, Nadi Gallery, Jakarta, 2004, exhibition catalogue, p. 26 and 27.)
Object no. 2: mental series' clean, simple and attractive composition provides interesting insight to the artist's resolution of the relationship between the three-dimensional and two-dimensional. Another work of his, Nothing something nothing was offered in the previous auction in Christie's, Hong Kong 27 November 2005. Like this present work, Nothing something nothing was set against basic planes of colour making clearer the examination of the co-existence of his three-dimensional objects with their relocation onto a two-dimensional format. Again in Nothing something nothing, the artist has effectively fused the tactile qualities of the subjects onto the flat planes of the canvas sensitively without losing the essence of the feel of the materials. Similarly too, the titles of both works Object no. 2: mental series and Nothing something nothing are intentionally vague to discourage viewers from assuming too much when looking at the paintings. Nothing something nothing motivated swift bidding from the collectors, achieving a final hammer price of nearly twice the high estimate.