Indonesia Loans Paintings for Major Dutch Exhibition on Independence War

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Laila Afifa

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  • The presentation of Amir Sidharta, one of the curators of Revolusi! exhibition, about the upcoming exhibition with the Rijksmuseum Friends and Patrons. The presentation covers the concept, purpose, and various perspective of this exhibition, which also aims at getting insights and feedback from the attendees.Rijksmuseum Auditorium, Amsterdam, Wednesday, October 13, 2021. Copyright: Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

    The presentation of Amir Sidharta, one of the curators of Revolusi! exhibition, about the upcoming exhibition with the Rijksmuseum Friends and Patrons. The presentation covers the concept, purpose, and various perspective of this exhibition, which also aims at getting insights and feedback from the attendees.Rijksmuseum Auditorium, Amsterdam, Wednesday, October 13, 2021. Copyright: Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

    TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - Seven paintings from Indonesia’s Presidential Palace collection will be on loan at a major exhibition on the country’s Independence War at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum, curator Harm Stevens said during an online press conference on Tuesday, January 11.

    “We are very happy to bring the news of this highly important loan of seven Indonesian master paintings from (Indonesia’s) Presidential collection,” Harm Stevens, Rijksmuseum’s history curator, said during the online press conference from Amsterdam.

    Rijksmuseum, the Netherlands’ main art museum, will open the exhibition titled ‘Revolusi! Indonesië Onafhankelijk (Revolution! Indonesia Independent) on February 11. The exhibition will focus on the turbulent years following Sukarno’s proclamation of Indonesia’s independence on August 17, 1945, through art and the story of the people behind those objects.

    The curators of Revolusi! exhibition - Amir Sidharta, Bonnie Triyana and Harm Stevens - were selecting materials for the exhibition. Rijkmuseum Library, Amsterdam, March 2019. Copyright: Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

    The seven paintings, Stevens said, “will be starring in our exhibition. They are first-class examples of the artistic representation of the spirit of the revolution.”

    “These paintings are the soul of the exhibition because they symbolize the spirit of independence of the Indonesian people, who are trying to create a culture and egalitarian society, and discontinue the oppression of the colonial era,” said Bonnie Triyana at the same press conference, but from Jakarta.

    What is unique from this exhibition is that two out of the four curators are Indonesian professionals: Bonnie, chief editor of history magazine Historia, and art expert Amir Sidharta. “For the first time in history these paintings will be exhibited abroad,” Bonnie said, adding that this shows “good cooperation between the Presidential Palace and the Rijksmuseum.”

    The seven paintings include work from maestros such as Soedjojono and Affandi.

    The Revolusi! exhibition will run until June 6, 2022.

    Linawati Sidarto (Amsterdam)