Popo Iskandar
The Modernist Series #2: Renung
: Art Agenda, JKT


For Popo Iskandar (1927-2000), contemplation is central to the process of creating art. He could take hours and hours to ponder and think in between painting until he is satisfied with a piece. Sometimes he goes back to add more layers of paint on a previously finished work. It is a process of striving to achieve nuances through a certain contemplative dialogue within himself until a new destination is reached from fresh considerations.

As a student and later a teacher in the modernist environs of Bandung, his style has been greatly influenced by the artists and tendencies in his era; cubism is just one of them. And yet, he has been able to develop his own characteristics that are both immersive and expressive of the self.

Popo Iskandar relies upon representational forms to break free from what could perhaps be stereotypical modernist abstract forms. In this way, his works become more stimulating and challenging, giving rise to artistic and creative possibilities including a more abstractive expression. In this sense, Renung becomes a silent space for us to rethink visually what we consider as representational art and expressionism, as well as how they fuse together in the midst of forms.

Installation Views