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 Inyoman Masriadi  (1973 - )

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Lived/Active: Indonesia      Known for: socio-political themed painting, black skin caricature figures

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

I Nyoman Masriadi, a painter, is a leading artist of the post-Suharto era and his works have gained a select collectors base, which includes prominent collectors in and around the region.

Masriadi was born 1973, in Gianyar, Bali.  He received his training in art at the Institute Seni Indonesia (ISI) Yogyakarta. The visual imagery and narratives in his paintings are derived from keen and intelligent observations of social life and behavioural traits. His visual vocabulary is striking, continuously refreshing and contemporaneously relevant.

In Bali, where he was born, there were two traditions of painting - a sacred one and one of words for a Western audience - but his relationship to these is indirect. Indeed, in an attempt to escape the dance ethos of Balinese painting and concentrate on detail, he is reputed to have stood on a cardboard box as he painted, to prevent taking any steps. He also reacted to the socio-political bent of the art school he attended in Yogyakarta.

Early works show him sparring with Western modernism in the guise of cubism but meshing it with caricature, the language of street advertising and graffiti. The way he has overdrawn his finished paintings with a marker can best be seen as a means of inscribing himself in or against that tradition.

Masriadi: Black Is My Last Weapon, was the artist's maiden solo show at the Singapore Art Museum which was co organized with Gajah Gallery in 2008. The exhibit spanned Masriadi's 10-year career and explored the evolution of his signature black-skinned figures, a motif now widely copied by other Indonesian painters.

Masriadi was awarded the prize for Best Painting at the Dies Natalis ISI Yogyakarta in 1997. He has participated in group exhibitions in Australia and the Netherlands, and in Indonesia: In Bali, Singapore, Jakarta, Mungkid (Mageland), Solo, Surabaya and Yogyakarta.


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