Page 8 - E-Katalog - Nengah Sujena
P. 8

REVELATION OF NATURE                                           Sujena paints abstractly by simplifying his images. He limits
                                                               the amount of information he includes in his paintings to
The Painting of Nengah Sujena                                  a mere suggestion of his subject matter. A mountain, for
                                                               instance, is represented simply as a basic triangular shape.
                                                               It is as if Sujena paints to refine and purify the world he
By Arif Bagus Prasetyo                                         perceives and experiences.
Nature is the main source of creative inspiration for          Abstraction enables Sujena’s creative imagination to
Nengah Sujena. Many of his paintings comprise imageries        liberate the lifeworld from the confinement of its physical
of the natural world such as mountain, tree, leaf, bird,       dimension, and transform it into a poetic presence that has
moon, and cloud. In most of his compositions such              many different possible meanings. Sujena has creatively
imageries are accompanied by the human figure and a            built new, meaningful visual-artistic constructions on
few man-made objects such as a house, chair, or umbrella.      various correspondences among elements of nature,
Sujena has developed from the images of nature, culture,       between human and nature, and between nature and
and the human a distinctive semiotic system to embody          culture. In such constructions, the representations of
his creative ideas into artworks.                              the real world not only consume space, but produce
                                                               space as well. Combinations of simplified imageries and
Sujena’s strong concern for nature has its roots in his daily  vast emptiness have led to compositions that offer deep
life. He lives in the cooler outskirts of the town of Bangli   meanings in terms of spatial experience and the space of
in central Bali. The natural environment of his hometown       experience.
in the highlands surrounding Mount Batur has been fairly
preserved. There are rice fields in front of his house.        Sujena’s paintings indicate an interesting exploration of
Beautiful green mountain scenery and humble rural life         spatial experience. His extremely simplified images seem
have been a large part of the artist’s everyday life.          to emphasize the flat nature of painting. Nevertheless, his
                                                               compositions often present the appearance of objects in
It is not surprising, then, that nature seems to be the        depth. Patterns of abstraction, textures, deformation, and
driving force behind Sujena’s creativity. For Sujena, nature   repetition create spatial ambiguity that evokes dramatic
has more than poetic effects produced by the beauty of         pictorial tension in Sujena’s paintings. Such ambiguity
shapes and colors that capture the imagination. He sees        suggests that color, shape, and perspective determine the
nature as a dynamic of space, motion, and light that has a     perception of space, time, and motion.
wealth of philosophical meanings to ponder.

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