Agung Kurniawan

AGUNG KURNIAWAN

Born:
14 March, 1968 in Jember, Jawa Timur (East Java), Indonesia

Education:
Archeology, Faculty of Cultural Sciences, Gadjah Mada University, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (not graduated)
Graphic Art, Faculty of Fine Arts, Indonesia Institute of the Arts, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (not graduated)

Agung Kurniawan is one of the most important contemporary artists of Indonesia. He is an artist who works with a variety of media. Agung Kurniawan has developed his artistic work within the field of concrete socio-cultural activism; he believes an artist has more and larger social responsibilities than simply producing artistic work. His traditional medium is drawing, but lately he works actively with performance art and videography. Although he works with performance art, he refuses to be called as a performer, and preferred to call himself as the director of the crowds in stead. Both as a studio artist and an art activist, he takes up clear positions and his approach often leads him either down to street level or to intervening in bureaucratic structures.

Agung Kurniawan’s work is reputed to be fairly “coarse” due to themes of violence, controversial politics and taboo subjects. The artist started out with book illustrations, drawings and comics, which offered a harsh, often satirical critique of Indonesian society at that time. With his drawing Happy Victim (1996), depicting people hanging upside down while laughing cheerfully, he won a 1996 Philip Morris Art Award and gained international recognition.

His famous trellis works series started in 2006. The series was inspired by an old family photo album from 1974, consisting of a photo diary of the artist’s mother during the last days of her dying father. Agung tried to recreate the personal as well collective memories by working the panels as a kind of comic book where the trellises are the contours of the figures and the shadows cast the blurred memory.

Agung Kurniawan co-founded "Indonesian Visual Art Archive" (IVAA) and co-owner of Kedai Kebun Forum (KKF) in Yogyakarta. His works are to be found worldwide mostly in museums e.g. Singapore Art Museum & permanent loan at Van Abbe Museum Eindhoven, as well as in private collection. His recent works include his performance in The Netherlands "Remember Day Parade and after", during the so-called transHISTORY (Arnhem June 2016) and his video art during the Europalia Festival 2017 (Paleis voor Schone Kunsten / BOZAR / Centre for Fine Art Brussels, Belgium).

Artist Statement 2015 (in Bahasa Indonesia, freely translated)

– Tidak ada yang lebih berharga dari seni, kalau ada itupun pasti palsu (Nothing is more truthful than art, if there is any, then it is false)
– Cinta itu sementara, kesepian itu abadi (Love is temporary, Loneliness is forever)
– Kemiskinan adalah ibu tiri seni kontemporer (Poverty is the stepmother of contemporary art)

Solo Exhibition

2015
Hanya Kematian Yang Setia Menunggu, performance at Indonesian French Institute (IFI), Yogyakarta

2013
Milik Nggendong Lali (Owning Cradling Forgetting), Richard Koh Gallery, Singapore

2012
Actus Contritionis, Umah Seni @Mentengartspace, Jakarta, Indonesia

2011
The Lines that Remind Me of You, Kendra Gallery, Bali, Indonesia

2006
Budiman Project, ArtiIpol Gallery, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Mural Project: Could I entertain you sir, Esplanade, Singapore

2003
Sex, Lies, and Drawing, Goethe Institute, Jakarta, Indonesia

2001
Lick me, please!, Cemeti Art House, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Lapendos, Centre Culturel Français (CCF) Yogyakarta, Indonesia
Lapendos, Barak Gallery, Bandung, Indonesia

1998
Ironi dan Parodi, Galeri Lontar, Jakarta, Indonesia

1995
Cemeti Contemporary Art Gallery, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

1994
Cemeti Contemporary Art Gallery, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Selected Group Exhibitions

2018
KunstRAI, Gallery Lukisan, Amsterdam
Pressing Matters, Framer Framed, Amsterdam

2017
Europalia's Power and other things, BOZAR Fine Arts Centre, Brussels, Belgium

2016
The Remember Day parade, Sonsbeek 2016, Arnhem, The Netherlands
Public Spirit, Centre of Contemporary Art Ujasdowsky, Poland
Home Project, North Dakota, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Mahabharata project, Dance Performance, Taman Budaya Yogyakarta, Taman Ismail Marzuki, Jakarta
Seven Scenes, Indonesian Contemporary art and Design (ICAD), Grand Kemang, Jakarta

2015
Masya Allah Transgenik part 2, performance at Bazaar Art Jakarta 2015, Jakarta
Monuman, Ten Second Monument, Jakarta Biennale, Jakarta

2014
Ten Million Years of Yearning, Sex in Hongkong, Para Site gallery, Hongkong
Passion / Possession, Hongkong Art Center, Hongkong

2013
SIP, Contemporary Indonesian Art, Mathias Ardnt gallery, Singapore
Once Upon a Time, The Collection Now, Van Abbe Museum, The Netherlands
Masya Allah Transgenik, Performance at Jogja Biennale XII, Yogyakata, Indonesia

2012
Penumbrae, at Art Stage Singapore 2012, presented by Umahseni Art Space, Marina Bay Sands,Exhibition and Convention Center, Singapore
Legacy: The Trace of Civilization, Esa Sampoerna Art Museum, Surabaya, Indonesia
Michael Jansen Gallery, Berlin, Germany
Domestic Stuff, Cemeti art house Yogyakarta, Salihara Jakarta
Looking East, Art Jog 2012, Yogyakarta
Gwangju Biennale, Roundtable, Gwangju South Korea, 2012
SIP, Contemporary Indonesian Art, Mathias Arndt Gallery, Berlin

2011
Art Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
New Mythology, Louis Vuitton Gallery, Paris, France
Global Art from 1989 till Now, ZKM, Karlsruhe, Germany
Beastly, Cemeti Art House, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

2010
Art Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Space & Image, Ciputra World Marketing Gallery, Jakarta, Indonesia
Crossing and Blurring the Boundaries: Medium in Indonesian Contemporary Art, Andi’s Gallery, Jakarta, Indonesia
Manifesto In the New Aesthetic, ICA, Singapore

2009
Beyond the Dutch, Central Museum Utrecht, The Netherlands
Jogja Art Fair II, Jogjakarta Art Centre, Yogyakarta, Indonesia
The Living Legends, National Gallery Indonesia, Jakarta, Indonesia
Jogja Biennale X, One Minute Mute; Performance Project, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

2008
Be(com)ing Dutch “The dutch day Dreaming”, Van Abbe Museum, The Netherlands
The Scale of Black Drawing Exhibition, Valentine Willie Gallery, Singapore
Grafis Hari Ini, Bentara Budaya Jakarta, Indonesia

Art Projects

2015
Proyek Peristiwa Teater: Hanya Kematian yang Setia Menunggu, 15 May 2015 7:30 pm at Auditorium IFI Yogyakarta

2011
Pause: Automatic Drawing Simple and Dangerous, Langgeng Art Foundation, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Work Experiences

2003 – now

Artistic Director of Kedai Kebun Forum, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

2004 – now
The Chairperson of Cemeti Art Foundation, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

2007
Artistic Director, Festival Kesenian Yogyakarta

2008
Artistic Director, Festival Kesenian Yogyakarta

Works in Collection

Heden, Den Haag, The Netherlands
Singapore Art Museum, Singapore
National Art Council, Singapore
Queensland Arts Gallery, Australia
Graphic Atelier Utrecht, The Netherlands
KLM, The Netherlands
The Jakarta Post, Jakarta, Indonesia
Deutsche Bank, Jakarta, Indonesia
Artpoli Gallery,The Netherlands
Nadi Galeri, Jakarta, Indonesia
Oei Hong Djien’s private museum, Indonesia
Loft gallery, Hongkong, Barcelona
Permanent loan on Van Abbe Museum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands
Cemeti Art Gallery, Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Publication/Book

2015
Lubricant, Agung Kurniawan, Brigitta Isabella, Farah Wardani, Umah Seni, Jakarta