ABDUL LATIFF MOHIDIN
b. Negeri Sembilan, 1941
GREEN LANDSCAPE (RIMBA SERIES), 2000
Signed and dated 'Latiff 2000' (lower right);
Inscribed, signed and dated on reverse
Oil on canvas
91cm x 91cm
Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur.
ESTIMATE RM 200,000 - 300,000
PRICE REALISED RM 268,800
“Let us say I begin from intuition.. Something that does not yet have logic or a rational basis… A shadow in the mind or a motion in the heart, a pulse of contemplation as yet unnamed… Only a deep and natural heartbeat…” – Abdul Latiff Mohidin
Abdul Latiff Mohidin’s core values are evident in his resolute approach to delve into nature and escape the moral stain of politics. He is able to pursue his direction with such immense confidence due to the fact that he is fully aware of his roots. He understands his inspirations and most importantly, he recognises and accepts his personal being, just as we are all the children of nature. “You have to come back to nature. There’s a magnificence and glory in the whole experience and nature is a very strong factor of enabling my work. I think about it in a way where the many memories and experiences of life are reduced to a lump of mud, a single leaf or one drop of water. And that drop of something is where the secrets are kept, to the spectacle of life,” the artist explains.
Green Landscape is a magnificent visual outcome of this belief, a tangible visualisation of the artist’s mind aimed to create an eternal representation of life on canvas. Broad brush marks of bright buttery yellow form the solid base of multilayer, powerful gestural brush strokes in green and ochre – clashing its dominance with the employment of drip technique made famous by American abstract expressionist Jackson Pollock - resulting in harmonious chaos. A yellow image resembling the alphabet ‘W’ in the background perhaps representing a tree trunk is the central motif that captures the viewer’s eyes. Swirled in a dizzying yet soothing motion, the viewer is lost in the lushness of conceptual foliage while the creator seeks solace in the making. The positive traits of the palette include balance and harmony; it is the great balancer of the heart and the emotions, creating equilibrium between the head and the heart.
Abdul Latiff Mohidin casts a giant shadow in the world of art and literature. In 1973, he was the youngest Malaysian artist to be accorded a Retrospective by the National Art Gallery and was granted an incredible second Retrospective from 2012 to 2013 showcasing more than 300 works in various media produced over six decades. He received his art training at the Hochschule fur Bildende Kunst in Berlin (1960 - 1964). On his return, he made his famous expedition around Southeast Asia including Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Indonesia. He won Second Prize (Graphic) in the 1968 Salon Malaysia. He advanced his studies in printmaking at the Atelier La Courrier in Paris (French Ministry scholarship, 1969) and the Pratt Institute in New York (John D. Rockefeller III scholarship, 1969). He is also a published poet with books including Sungai Mekong (1971), Kembara Malam (1974), Serpihan Dari Pendalaman (1979), Pesisir Waktu (1981), and Sajak-Sajak Dinihari (1996). He won the Malaysian Literary Awards consecutively from 1972 to 1976 and again in 1984 and 1986, and the coveted Southeast Asian Writers Award in Bangkok (1984). He was Guest Writer of the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka in 1988, a Creative Fellow at Universiti Sains Malaysia in 1977, and a guest artist at Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia in 1980. He has translated Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s classical German play Faust into Bahasa in 2013. He was also the founder and guiding spirit of the artist’s co-operative, Anak Alam (Children of Nature). His past major series of exhibitions included Rimba (1998), Voyage (2007) andSerangga (2013). In 2014, he held two exhibitions in celebration of his 73rd birthday entitled Latiff Mohidin – Seascape, Recent Paintings (2010 – 2014) held in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.
Pago-Pago to Gelombang: 40 Years of Latiff Mohidin, Singapore Art Museum, 1994.
L.I.N.E. Latiff Mohidin: From Point To Point, Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka, Kuala Lumpur, 1993 (translated by Adibah Amin).