Born in Ubud, Nyoman Sujana Kenyem, belongs to a small circle of contemporary artists whose work, while modern in spirit and execution, still retains the lyricism of traditional art.
Notably he is one of the most prominent members of a new generation of artists who chose to study in the late 1990s in the newly established Bali Indonesian art academy (STSI)
rather than Yogyakarta or Bandung, home of the nation's most famous art academies.
Since his appearance on the art's scene in the 1990s, Kenyem has won national and international praise for the poetic beauty of his canvasses. The subject of each of his images, mirrored in titles like ‘Touch," ‘Smile,' and ‘Nostalgia' – each a highly personal visualization of feelings and emotions. Swirling leaves, flowers, tiny human figures and luminous celestial bodies flow with grace and beauty like the reflection of the moon in running water.
It is clear that Kenyem adheres to the ancient mystical belief that humans and artists can best find their inspiration in nature. In one painting, ‘Peace with Nature', we see a large orb of flowers creating a veil for the sun. More flowers rain down like a yellow bead-like curtain. In the background a stallion rises up on its hind legs as if in defiance against a yellow-green background of leaves. Mysterious tiny dancing figures whirl in the tapestry.
It seems all so easy but so-too there is mystery and perhaps even confusion. What does the horse symbolize? There is joy and beauty but also a trite undertone; perhaps the acknowledgment that beauty and life are, like all things, transient. As in meditation, the mind wanders but the artist with simple but profound symbols such as the sun, the moon, flowers and dance brings our focus back to the centre and the beginning and end of all things.Embracing Nature's PoemAn Exhibition of Paintings by Nyoman Sujana Kenyem
Ganesha Gallery at the Four Seasons Resort at Jimbaran Bay
Open Daily 9 am to 6 pm, March 4 – April 5, 2010
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