Lot 042

b. Singapore, 1963


Signed and dated ‘mastura ‘90’ (lower right)

Mixed media collage on wood
88cm x 88cm

Private Collection, Kuala Lumpur;
acquired directly from the artist.

ESTIMATE  RM 25,000 - 30,000


Mastura Abdul Rahman produces visually stimulating paintings through her manipulation of isometric and aerial perspectives of home interiors particularly of the traditional Malay, skillful integration of floral motifs found in traditional textiles such as batik and the presence of domestic objects that represent the artist’s locality - executed in the manner of Geometric Abstraction. The result gives an invigorating look on the nation’s aspirations for an identity in cultural expressions and heritage continuity. Illustrated here is the interior of a Malay abode distinguished by the elaborate patterning of floor and wall seen from an aerial perspective. A traditional game of congkak is placed on a carpet with a cushion and a set of newspapers is laid on the floor. A three dimensional effect is present in this meticulous and intricate piece evident in the wooden structure of the dwelling and the congkak.

As part of two special compositions from Mastura’s Interior series (1985 - 1999), she explores various permutations combining elements of bird’s eye view, foreshortened space and 360 degrees angle. Her sophisticated techniques have created an optical bending for a well-orchestrated syncretic display of crafts and items used in everyday life. Mentored by Dr. Sulaiman Esa, Ponirin Amin and Fauzan Omar during her tertiary education at Universiti Teknologi MARA (UiTM), she was trained to expand her research beyond local proclivities. Some of her main influences include Persian and Mughal miniature paintings, the concept of spatial arrangements in the Japanese Ukiyo-E prints, and isometric projection drawings - evident in the creation of her first body of Interior series.

Mastura Abdul Rahman is much influenced by the Malay Islamist revivalist movement of the 1980s and a back-to-Malay roots orientation following the 1971 National Cultural Congress. Her astute combination of Malay crafts, architecture, traditional culture (textiles, woodcarving) and aesthetics in her Interior series clinched the Major Award in the coveted Young Contemporary Artists competition in 1985. In 1987, she won a Consolation Prize in the Johor Art Competition. She graduated from the Mara Institute of Technology (1982 - 1986) with a Diploma in Art and Design (Fine Art), majoring in Painting and Printmaking, and added her Art Teacher’s Diploma. She obtained her M.Sc (Creative Multimedia) from the Multimedia University in Cyberjaya, in 2009. She has also participated in a number of exhibitions at home and abroad.

The Use of Traditional Malay Art Images in the Paintings of Mastura
A. Rahman
, Tengku Sabri, 1998/1999.