B. Bali 1971
Beda Dalam Damai, 2003
Acrylic on canvas
140 x 145 cm
Putu Sutawijaya studied art at Indonesia Institute of Fine Art (ISI) Yogyakarta. He currently lives and works in Yogyakarta and Bali. As a painter, sculptor and performance artist, Putu embodies the multi-media, cross-disciplinary character of Indonesian contemporary art.
At the same time, a main focus of his work is the human body as both an expressive form and a vessel of the spirit: as Putu says, ‘the body is the medium of suffering, pain, laughter and fear.’ The spontaneous energy of Putu’s paintings translates naturally into his sculptures. As the Indonesian critic Kris Budiman has pointed out, it is almost as though the figures in his paintings have ‘crossed over into three-dimensional space… to look for meaning in different contexts.’
Above all else, it is the gestural movement of Putu’s works that communicate an intense spectrum of spiritual and emotional states, from contemplation to sorrow to the pure exuberance of dance. Putu is also deeply drawn to sacred sites and often travels to the ancient temples scattered around Java and Bali, where he spends days painting.