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Lot 02

b. Johor, 1950


Signed and dated ‘yusof ghani 1987’ on reverse
Mixed media on paper
36.5cm x 54cm

Private collection, Penang;
acquired through GaleriWan, Kuala Lumpur.

ESTIMATE  RM 6,000 - 8,000

How many figures can you spot? It is like a game of “Where’s Wally?” with a piece from the popular Tari series by Yusof Ghani as the figures are often camouflaged in a mish-mash of curvilinear strokes and swirling colours.  Although a work on paper, this is neither a study nor a sketch but an accomplished work on its own. Two figures are discernible on the sides, both looking outside the canvas, while another is suggested in the centre. Covering the surface are lines that are bold, energetic and gestural. Within this limited surface area, Yusof delivers a powerful and intense rendition of colliding figures unfolding in sequential movements, posing the question of whether it started as a dance or an act of protest.

Yusof had the distinction of skipping the MARA Institute of Technology rites of passage and headed straight to George Mason University in the USA on a government scholarship with which he graduated with a BFA in Graphic Art in 1981. He pursued his MFA at Catholic University in Washington in 1983. Before his American studies, he had been an artist-illustrator (Agriculture Ministry, 1967), an instructor (Fisheries Institute, Penang, 1971) and a graphic artist (RTM, 1977). On his return, he lectured at the Universiti Mara Institute of Technology. An abstract expressionist painter, his works are considered to be some of the best in Malaysia. His most sought after series namely Tari has been collected by museums, institutions and respected private collectors. Other well known series include Topeng, Wayang, Hijau, Segerak and Biring.

Siri Tari by Yusof Ghani, Hijjas Kasturi Exhibition: Paintings, Drawings and Installation Works, Galeri Citra, Kuala Lumpur, 1989.
South East Asian Art Today,
Roeder Publications, 1992.
From Tarian To Topeng
, Rusli Hashim Fine Art, Kuala Lumpur, 1996.