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J. Ariadhitya Pramuhendra



Born in Semarang, 1984

J. Ariadhitya Pramuhendra is an Indonesian artist who stands out in the Asian art scene for his unique approach, utilising charcoal and canvas to craft realistic yet dramatic compositions. 

A significant element of Pramuhendra’s work revolves around self-portraits, with the artist often positioning himself as the protagonist or central figure within his narrative. His large-scale charcoal drawings on canvas transcend conventional boundaries, depicting scenes from famous movies,  paintings, and notably, the Bible.

The artist’s process involves staging scenes, photographing them, and then meticulously transferring them onto canvas using only charcoal and his fingers. Pramuhendra’s quest for identity takes centre stage in his creations, prompting introspective questions about self, religion, and societal roles. Pramuhendra’s upbringing in a Catholic family adds layers of complexity to his exploration, especially in a predominantly Muslim country like Indonesia. His works serve as a commentary on the unresolved national identity, influenced by political changes, media accessibility, and contemporary awareness. 

Trained as a printmaker, Pramuhendra’s transition to dry media, particularly charcoal pencil on paper or canvas, has resulted in intense, meticulous and rich grayscale images. Whether working with drawings,  installations, or  photography, he maintains a commitment to black and white aesthetics. His use of  chiaroscuro  becomes a metaphorical exploration, where light symbolises the divine presence. 

His art reflects not only religious adherence but also cultural observations, acknowledging the syncretic nature of Indonesia’s multi-ethnic and multi-faith society.


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