Lot 058

b. Indonesia, 1953

READ, 2008

Signed and dated 'Astari 08' (side)
50cm x 40cm x 20cm

Private Collection, Indonesia.

ESTIMATE  RM 10,000 - 15,000


Astari studied fashion design in London before switching to painting in Minnesota, USA and at Royal College of Art in London. She has been a member of the Jakarta Art Foundation and lecturer at the Jakarta Art Institute, Faculty of Fine Art. She has actively exhibited in her home country Indonesia, Singapore, the Philippines, France, Italy, the UK, and the USA .

A female artist of international prominence, Astari is known for her take on political, cultural, social and gender issues in Indonesia. Her training on both sides of the Atlantic gained her much familiarity with Occidental imagery, and provided her the distance necessary to critique her Javanese roots with lucidity. In the early stage of her artistic career in 1990s, she learnt that women were expected to follow rules of conducts of the so-called femininity by the socio-cultural standards set by certain groups of people. Raised in traditional Javanese family, she witnessed her fellow women told on how to dress or behave to what was socially and sexually acceptable to male patriarchy.

In recent years, however, Astari broadened her reach to not only capture the contending pressures of tradition and modernity on women, but also to the highest intellectual level of social consciousness as portrayed on her three-dimensional works through which she is questioning the position of women’s role in global consumerism. In the present lot titled READ, Astari contrasts two icons of religion and modernity and weds them together beautifully in a Kelly bag. Through this artwork, Astari is questioning if spirituality and modernity can actually connect and function together in the face of shockingly massive social change.