Ruth Marbun

Ruth Marbun

Ruth Marbun (b.1985) is a visual artist based in Jakarta that works much with the depiction of deconstructed figures as a form of her profound interest towards human behavior in connection to the inner self and society as paralleled issue. She embraces details and subtleness from the patterns in life such as imperfection, contradiction, resistance, and honor it as part of growth and process.

Her mini-solo exhibition with Clear Gallery Japan at Art Jakarta in 2018 questioned how family is portrait as sacred value with picture perfect quality in the heritage of her Indonesian root and the contradictory that it causes, creating a void and distance with the natural being of human and relationships that truthfully come with flaws and mistakes.

“One is A Million” is a mixed media installation that she presented at #Perempuan exhibition in Melbourne on December 2018 as part of a group exhibition featuring emerging contemporary artists from Indonesia. The work is an open proposal to add perspective in the construction of value towards women in modern society, to give credits not only to the quantified achievements but also in the daily act and resistance that are more inclusive for women, who are dealing with different circumstances in life.

Ruth has also been exhibiting in Kyoto, Jogjakarta, Osaka, and recently Sydney at Darren Knight Gallery with Indo Artlink and John Cruthers featuring her recent works in textile medium, where she has been extending possibilities from the limitation as a familiar medium off her fashion background to a new approach and narration in the current art practice.

During her residency at Rimbun Dahan, Ruth will be focusing in documenting her experience of working and living closely with nature, something in contrast to her upbringing as a city inhabitant. She will be recording the process through visual journal and also creative writings, which embodies intuitive observation and attentive interaction towards the environment during the one-month period stay, engaging in a reversed rhythm from her regular practice that relies on momentum and practicality. The course of adaptation is often taken for granted for being wired automatically into the operational system as human, despite its importance as an essential survival virtue that advances us from other species. Ruth considers the state of newness and to look elsewhere is a far-reaching of understanding the element of absence inwards, that will create new possibilities off the mundanity as a result from updating to an extensive context.

Ruth will be our Southeast Asian Arts Residency artist for a month in February. You can check out her Instagram here.

 

Syarifah Nadhirah

Syarifah Nadhirah

Syarifah Nadhirah (b.1993) is a Malaysian based artist, who is constantly unearthing means to present her work in ways that people can relate to. Her interest in Art has spurred since childhood and her background in Architecture only inspired her to delve even more into the comfort of painting and the quest to explore herself as a visual storyteller. Oftentimes she finds herself going against the grain whenever seduced by the world of practice as she was always tinkering with creative projects such as holding workshops at Urbanscapes 2017, Yayasan Sime Darby Arts Festival 2018 and Bank Negara’s Women in the Arts Bazaar while drafting floor plans. There is always a challenge to break free from the structural disposition and manufactured schemes that she was used to, hence dabbling with experimental ideations only made sense when she practiced Architecture, which also gave birth to her co-founded creative company called Paperweight Studio.

She mainly uses watercolor and ink in her creations, particularly influenced by elements of water and human relationship with nature. Though, in a residency setting at Rimbun Dahan, she looks forward to an extended time alone to immerse herself in focusing on exploring another old form of art which is lino cut printmaking, a manifestation of labour of love and executing a purposeful thought process rather than the final product. Having perpetually lured by the lush green surrounding her neighbourhood, it is not uncommon for her to reflect that in most of her work. But, the need to recount these green forests became more prevalent to her as the ever-changing urban planning takes over vast lands throughout the years. She is mostly, or rather entirely interested in the current ripples of the perilous state that the Orang Asli (Indigenous People) here in Malaysia has to adhere to, of whom are susceptible to deceit and neglect, even from those who run the country. She hopes to engage in a series of dialogues with them and form a reiteration of appreciation for their unwithered spirit and love for their land.

Syarifah Nadhirah will be with us as a Southeast Asian Arts Residency artist for three months starting from February 2019. You can check out her Instagram here and her Behance profile here.

Dương Mạnh Hùng

Dương Mạnh Hùng

Dương Mạnh Hùng (b.1991) is a self-taught translator, writer, and independent visual culture researcher based in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon), Vietnam. Dương has always been fascinated by the discourse of modernities and nationalism in Southeast Asia and how it influences modern arts and literature stemming from the region. His current interests include, but are not limited to: comparative dialogue between Southeast Asian modern arts and literature; translation as a mode of existing and understanding for visual production; Hispanic & Iberian linguistics; and historical and sociopolitical networks between Vietnam and the regions of Southeast Asia and Latin America. Dương is also one of the co-founders of Cultural Community Discourse (CCD), an initiative based in Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon) that aims to connect local and regional researchers to the Vietnamese public via talks, workshops, and other educational platforms.

During his one-month residency at Rimbun Dahan, Dương wants to explore the concept of ‘landscape’ as depicted in 19th-20th century Malaysian literature and painting and how ‘nationalistic’ natural landscape becomes a mixing space for different forms of modernity in the peninsular.

Clara Chow

Clara Chow

Clara Chow (Singapore) is the author of two short-story collections: Dream Storeys (2016) and Modern Myths (2018). The former was born out of interviews with Singapore architects about their imaginary buildings, while the latter reworks Greek myths in Singaporean settings.

Her work has also been published in the likes of Columbia Journal, Asia Literary Review, Cha, Litro and Quarterly Literary Review Singapore (QLRS). In 2018, she was awarded Prairie Schooner‘s Jane Geske Award for her story “Siren (Redux) by Haley Tien-Warrior – 25th Anniversary Oral History/DJ Cliffhanger Remix – MUST LISTEN! THE FEELS…Awesome…”.

A former journalist and arts correspondent, she has taught creative writing at Nanyang Technological University and English literature at the Singapore University of Social Studies. She co-founded the online literary and art journal WeAreAWebsite.com in 2015. 

Clara is a writer in our Southeast Asian Arts Residency program of 2018. At Rimbun Dahan, she is working on a joss-paper novel, meant to be burnt after reading. The work will explore taboos associated with book-burning, funeral rituals and Asian superstition.

Links to stories online:

“Bare Bones”

http://columbiajournal.org/fiction-by-clara-chow-bare-bones/

Excerpt from “The Wheel”

https://www.asiancha.com/content/view/3385/692/

Excerpt from “Siren (Redux)…”

https://muse.jhu.edu/article/686564/pdf

Shermaine Heng

Shermaine Heng

Shermaine is a Singaporean contemporary dance choreographer. She completed a Bachelor of Arts (Mass Comm & Political Science) at the University of Melbourne before embarking on a full-time career in dance. She then studied a Postgraduate Diploma in Performance Creation (Choreography) and subsequently, a Master of Dance at the Victorian College of the Arts in Melbourne, Australia where she was awarded the 2014 Victorian Government Scholarship for Dance.

Throughout her postgraduate years, Shermaine was also funded by various arts organisations such as Creative Victoria, Regional Arts Victoria, Ballarat Regional Multicultural Council to create two works “Breathe, Woman!” (2015) and Things They Said (2016) as part of her arts residencies in Ballarat, Victoria. Her works have since been featured across various platforms such as The Courier, The Ballarat Miner and ABC Radio and News.

After nearly 10 years in Melbourne, Shermaine returned to Singapore to continue her work as an artist and choreographer. She staged a work-in-progress The Intimacy of Corners (2018) as part of the M1 Contact Festival in June. She also heads contemporary dance at Jitterbugs Swingapore, a musical theatre studio under the CSTD Jason Winters Contemporary Dance Syllabus. She has also cohesively worked as an associate choreographer for Singapore Repertory Theatre (The Little Company), for their re-staging of The Nightingale this year.

Shermaine is currently invested in the relationship between performer and viewer, particularly in understanding kinaesthetic empathy, which involves developing empathy through observing the movements of another. She is also playing with text and writing as a choreographic method for dance.

Shermaine is at Rimbun Dahan for three weeks as part of our Choreographers Residency. You can find out more about her works at her website.

Lily Yulianti Farid

Lily Yulianti Farid

Lily Yulianti Farid is a media, communication and gender & development specialist, researcher, trainer and translator with more than 15 years of experience in Indonesia, Japan and Australia. Lily has worked as a communication specialist, writer, radio journalist, producer, presenter, translator and interpreter (English – Indonesian Language). She holds a PhD in Gender studies at the University of Melbourne through an Australian Leadership Award scholarship. She is the founder/director of Makassar International Writers Festival in Indonesia and the co-founder of Indonesia’s first citizen journalism website. Lily has led media and communications training and capacity building workshops for Members of Parliament, government officials, Indonesian journalists, and community organisations, and has extensive experience designing media campaigns and engagement strategies for Indonesian women’s organisations. She is a professional translator and interpreter (Indonesian/English). In 2013 she translated Anita Roddick’s Book, Business as Unusual from English to Indonesia. Roddick is the founder of the Body Shop and a pioneer of social-entrepreneurship. She also produced monologue/play for women and produced Singing Your Poetry Program for youth in Indonesia.

Since 2011, Lily is the founder and director of Makassar International Writers Festival, co-founder and executive director of Rumata’ Artspace Indonesia, executive producer of Makassar South East Asian Film Academy, the producer for INDONATION (2011), Charity Concert in Melbourne in association with Indonesian Students Association, Deakin University.

Lily participated at Ubud Writers and Readers Festival (2008-2013), Singapore Writers Festival (2009), Word Storm Writers Festival Darwin (2010), Byron Bay Writers Festival Australia (2012), Melbourne Writers Festival (2013 and 2017), British Council Edinbrugh Festival (2016), Frankfurt Book Fair (2015), Europhalia Arts Festival (2017), George Town Literary Festival (2014), Indonesian International Book Fair Festival (2017), Winternachten Festival (2009), Pasar Malam Paris (2008).

Lily will be at Rimbun Dahan for one month under our Southeast Asian Arts Residency program. She is working to document and examine narratives and creative works in Malaysia and to interview Malaysian writers, publishers and literary communities during her residency.

Faizal Yunus

Faizal Yunus

Faizal Yunus (b.1989, Malaysia) is a Malaysian based artist who works mainly in printmaking, painting and installation. He graduated in Bachelor of Fine Arts from Mara University of Technology (UiTM) in 2012 majoring in printmaking. Faizal has been drawn towards nature as he grew up in such a surrounding that has helped him nurture his imagination and interpretation of the greenery around him. Autonomy has driven him to believe that an egalitarian society is vital which is where he adapts to the banal practices of everyday life into his abstract print paintings. He draws inspiration from nature, a familiar landscape of lush greenery from where all his imagination had began. He explores alternative print language outside the limitation of printmaking studio by expanding his ideations and limitations through various printmaking techniques and processes.

In his first solo exhibition Matrix, circa 2016 he started looking into his daily life essentials and gathering objects surrounding him for ideas and inspiration as he found limitations in available facilities and easily gathered materials. He felt that by using the objects that so much so associates with a layman’s daily routine, he could create artworks with a heightened sense of desolation in his own narrative. That is how he preempts life to be based on the things that are happening around him. The process of reiterating his thoughts and reflections into his artwork depicts his personality as well as his conviction on the way life looks around him. His solo exhibition – Vortex 2018, revolved around a journey of finding different perspectives and causes of the actions he chooses to make. He believes it is a journey where he unravels the truth where he challenges his capabilities to explore within his reach. Vortex is his poetic statement on the current state of pollution and our role in undoing the beauty of our landscape.

Joining Rimbun Dahan would help me immerse myself in nature. When I’m one with nature, I believe I can uproot my thoughts into my abstract print paintings.

Faizal will be at Rimbun Dahan as a resident artist from mid Oct to end of Nov 2018, via a collaboration with Richard Koh Fine Art. You can check out more of his works at his website.

Melanie Gritzka del Villar

Melanie Gritzka del Villar

Melanie Gritzka del Villar (b. 1982) is a transnational visual artist, born of German-Philippine parents, currently based on Boracay Island in the Philippines. Her practice is shaped by an ongoing exploration of ways in which disparate cultural, geographical and environmental elements can coexist. The artist is particularly concerned with the state of living in an increasingly fragmented and vulnerable world. This translates into a sensibility towards cast away objects, forgotten (hi)stories and overlooked surfaces as poetic portals and holders of latent possibilities for alternative narratives. Gritzka del Villar’s mixed media works are palimpsests traced from a dialogue with the stranded materials and the environments of which they are a product. The materials she uses include driftwood found on the shores of Philippine islands, collage, photography and maps.

This past year the artist has been working intensely with the theme of the Spanish galleon trade of the 16th to 19th century, which marked the birth of globalisation. During her 2-month residency at Rimbun Dahan she wants to expand this project and do research on the Asian spice trade in Pre-European era whilst at the same time looking at current waves of migration in Southeast Asia.

Her projects can be found on her website. You can also follow her works on her Facebook page and Instragam.

Nadhir Nor

Nadhir Nor

Nadhir Nor (b. 1994) is an illustrator based in Sungai Buloh, Selangor. Graduated from The One Academy, Sunway he aspires to dabble in as many media he can try on from a mural commission for Urbanscapes (2016), to designing journals and sketchbooks for Journalife (2017). He is also interested in all things otherworldly. Mythology, ancient cultures and its relationship with modern society are some of the major subjects explored in his works. He believes that there’s something about finding the otherworldly in the mundane and vice versa, and this makes a story worth told. He strives to share as much magical body of work as he can with the world.

Nadhir is our resident artist for August – September 2018. For his stay at Rimbun Dahan, he will be exploring ways to bridge his works back to traditional media. He wants to try to reconnect with the physicality and textures that traditional work has to offer while also exploring world-building fictional folklores in local cultures.

You can follow more of his work at his tumblr and facebook page.

 

Chuah Shu Ruei

Chuah Shu Ruei

Chuah Shu Ruei is an emerging contemporary artist based in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Having graduated from ASWARA (National Academy of Arts, Heritage and Culture) in 2013, and also having done apprenticeships with Long Thien Shih and Studio TERUSI (a Malaysian artist collective), her educational exposure to traditional Malaysian heritage strongly informs her practice, which is primarily ephemeral community art installation projects. Her practice also includes mixed media collages that play with perceptual change and interaction with time, space, light and shadow, and an actively engaged/included viewer. The categories of installation and collage work often combine into/overlap each other in her practice, as her overall body of work branches into themes of multi-culturalism, inclusivity, assimilation and validation of the collective mindset, to be further explored  during her Rimbun Dahan residency.

Since 2011, her installation works have been exhibited in Kuala Lumpur, Langkawi and Penang, and most recently in 2017 as part of her solo residencies in Reunion Island (France) and Cebu (Philippines). In Malaysia, her object based artworks have been exhibited in group shows at Core Design Gallery, Hin Bus Art Depot, the 8thInternational Art Expo Malaysia, Pelitahati Gallery, the National Visual Art Gallery, Richard Koh Fine Art,  as well as in group exhibitions in Thailand, Singapore, and most recently Turkey. Her artwork is also part of the art collection featured in ‘Rumah Malaysia’(the Malaysian Embassy) in Beijing.

Shu Ruei is our resident artist for six months and will be exhibiting her work at our gallery in January 2019 along with Wong Xiang Yi. You can find out more about her at her facebook page and her website.