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Tears from Heaven

30 June - 11 August 2024


30 June - 11 August 2024

Curated by Asmudjo J. Irianto

The title of this exhibition, Tears from Heaven, follows the title of Pramuhendra's installation piece, which features the sculpture Pieta—Virgin Mary holding the body of Jesus—drenched in rainwater, like tears falling from heaven. The interplay of light and shadow, the raindrops on the surface of the statue, and the accompanying music evoke a transcendental resonance—yet also a deep sense of compassion. In another installation, Calvary, large burnt wooden beams are stacked like the remnants of a Cross. These two works poignantly engage the viewer's senses and perceptions, evoking melancholy and spiritual emotion. The tears from heaven and the remnants of the Cross reflect a concern for the persistent state of human and worldly suffering. Does every religion teach goodness? This is why in contemporary Western art, artists are often sceptical and openly critical of religion. It's frequently mentioned that religious themes in Western contemporary art only appear if the intent is to mock them. However, Pramuhendra is different; he continues to show his belief in the power of religion as a guide for life.

Pramuhendra's paintings/drawings all feature female figures, embodying the figure of the Virgin Mary, in the contemporary context, modern women. The exclusive depiction of women appears to critique patriarchal power in major religions. The visual characteristics of Pramuhendra's paintings/drawings are consistent with Tears from Heaven, exhibiting a black-and-white, light-and-dark nuance, and sublimity. The scattered charcoal in the work Calvary is a primordial aspect of Pramuhendra's paintings/drawings. Charcoal, as the primary substance, is the final point of purification after the burning process—much like the myth of the phoenix—rising anew through Pramuhendra's canvas as female figures.


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