Tag Archives: Malaysian Artist

Creating Pathways For Young Artists 年轻艺术家的指南针

Bayu Utomo Radjikin

Director of HOM Art Trans

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“For me, I want to nurture young artists so that 10 years from now, we will have many more good artists to showcase impressive art works”

With a long list of solo and group exhibitions, locally and internationally, in his belt and multiple awards, Bayu Utomo Radjikin is no stranger in the art industry. The Sabahan, who has a Bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts, is particularly well known for his solo exhibition featuring mainly skulls in his paintings two years ago called “Ada Apa Dengan Tengkorak”.

“There is a future yet for the art industry here and I am sure that one day, our artists will be able to bring this industry up to finally catch up with our neighbouring countries.”

After a break of two years, when he worked on his latest masterpieces, Bayu Utomo launched a solo of his abstract works in “Gejolak” this year at G13 Gallery in Kuala Lumpur. “It is more of an abstract form that is fluid and different from my more figurative works like Tengkorak,” he said about his latest work. He also plans to work on more abstract forms in his future pieces.

“I want to do something that’s different from my previous styles and I enjoyed doing this so I am looking forward to creating more abstract pieces like in Gejolak,” he shared. Gejolak is Bayu’s interpretation of the feelings and emotions that swirled endlessly within humans. He said the strokes represented the strength and weakness along with the imbalances of feelings inside humans. Gejolak is his 10th solo exhibition since he launched his very first solo in 1996 at the National Art Gallery.

Other than his own work, the 46-year-old is intent on helping budding artists to succeed in an industry that is wrought with challenges. Bayu is the director of HOM Art Trans, an independent art space dedicated towards cultivating young and new artists. The organisation has three main programmes, The Residency, The Art Fund and The Art Award, to nurture, help and promote young talented Malaysian artists.

“There is a future yet for the art industry here and I am sure that one day, our artists will be able to bring this industry up to finally catch up with our neighbouring countries.”

“It is important to nurture these young artists by providing them with the means and space, otherwise it is difficult for them to flourish,” he said. He said these young artists are really talented, including those who graduated with fine art degrees. However, there were no avenue for them to flourish and succeed so many would easily give up. He recently organised group exhibitions for the young artists in Penang and Kuala Lumpur.

“Of course, all these exhibitions mean that we also needed a supportive audience to keep them motivated but unfortunately, we don’t get a lot of people who understands,” he said. The art industry in Malaysia is still growing and it will take time for the audience to really appreciate fine art like paintings and sculptures.

Bayu has been in the art industry for over 25 years and he believed that though the art industry is still growing, it is heading in the right direction. “We are still lagging behind compared to Indonesia and Manila,” he said. Art is still considered unimportant and not a priority for most people. It is not something corporations will support and many still assumed that exhibitions can only be held by those who have the money to do so.

“For me, I wanted to nurture young artists so that 10 years from now, we will have many more good artists to showcase impressive art works,” he said. With great masterpieces, he believed it will lead to progress for the art industry in Malaysia. He is also nurturing one of his children who has shown an interest in drawing.

“There is a future yet for the art industry here and I am sure that one day, our artists will be able to bring this industry up to finally catch up with our neighbouring countries,” he said. Bayu is now working on his next project, more abstract art works, and has plans to hold another solo exhibition in the near future.


在成功举办了国内外一系列个人和集体展览会,创造无数艺术话题和荣获许多奖项,Bayu Utomo Radjikin 绝对是艺术行业并不陌生的名字。这名拥有美术学士学位的沙巴人,两年前以别具一格的骷髅颅骨主题 :“Ada Apa Dengan Tengkorak”的个人展览而知名。

而历经两年休息后重整旗鼓,Bayu Utomo推出了最新杰作,拥有抽象意识的“波动(Gejolak)”,今年在吉隆坡的G13 Gallery 正式展出。“这是抽象的表述形式,相当流动性,不同于我象征性质的作品,如Tengkorak。”他谈到最新工作,计划在未来的创作中以更抽象形式展现。



除了本身的创作工作外,这名46岁的艺术工作者还打算协助新人闯荡这个挑战性的领域。他也是 HOM Art Trans 的总监,这是一个独立的艺术空间,致力于培养年轻和新兴艺术家。该组织具备三大主要构成:住宿、艺术基金和奖项,并以培育,帮助和推动年轻的马来西亚才能艺术家。






Malaysia Art 2016 2016年的马来西亚艺术圈

It is undeniable that Malaysian art industry was expecting a tough ride after the introduction of Goods and Services Tax (GST) in 2015. It gave rise to unprecedented jam-packed auctions just before its official implementation with the hope that collectors would take advantage of saving instead of paying GST. Although most expected a bad year of 2015, the overall total sales result was a complete astonishment with around RM2 million higher than 2014. Henry Butcher Art Auctioneers outperformed the rest with more than RM10.7 million sales, followed by KLAS Art Auction with about RM8 million, RM7.5 million for Masterpiece Auction KL and The Edge Auction for RM1.5 million.

2016 marks an interesting year for Malaysian art industry as it will be the time for collectors to transform into bargain hunters, making it an uphill battle for both artists and art galleries. Although some of the relatively new galleries have decided to call it a day, the more established galleries such as Wei-Ling Gallery, G13, Core Design Gallery and Richard Koh Fine Art were among those that brave the outlook as they not only go on the offensive with interesting local exhibitions, but also going abroad to promote in-house artists in international art exhibitions such as Art Stage Singapore. While other galleries such as Galeri Seni Mutiara and The Art Gallery from Penang and KL-based galleries such as PINKGUY Gallery and Segaris Art Centre prefer to focus more on local presentations. In short, galleries today must showcase its strength towards the artists they represent in order to gain collectors’ confidence with an apparent objective that they will be the blue chip when it comes to art investment.

With an expected slowdown in the Malaysian economy, the art industry will be facing a challenging year ahead. It is also crunch time for true dedicated artists and professional art galleries to prove to the public that their creations are worth collecting and investing, as the world has had enough of self-proclaimed and non-serious artists while some better artists demand prices beyond the reach of most especially the newcomers. Collectors are not dumb rich people; artists and their artworks are just like other professions and products that consumers pay with expectations.

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无可否认,马来西亚艺术圈在2015年大马政府实行消费税之后,对前景的展望是崎岖难行。另外,消费税实施之前,大马拍卖行引起了前所未有的拥挤,因为收藏家们想提早省一笔钱。虽然多数人预计2015年是不利的一年,但实际上拍卖行的整体营收仍令人惊讶,达200万令吉,高于2014年的记录。其中,亨利艺术拍卖行表现鹤立鸡群,营收超过1070万令吉,其次是KLAS艺术拍卖行,大约800万令吉;吉隆坡尚品艺术拍卖行750万令吉;The Edge拍卖行150万令吉。

2016年对马来西亚艺术圈而言,是有趣的一年。因为这一年,收藏家可能逢低买入,艺术圈成为艺术家和画廊之间的艰苦战场。虽然一些相对较新的画廊已决定关闭,比较资深的画廊,如Wei-Ling Gallery、G13、Core Design Gallery 和 Richard Koh Fine Art却勇敢前进。它们不仅积极举办有趣的本地艺术展,也到国际艺术展如“艺术登陆新加坡”介绍本身的艺术家。槟城的珍珠画廊和The Art画廊,以及来自吉隆坡的画廊,如PINKGUY画廊和Segaris艺术中心比较专注于本地展览。总之,今天的画廊必须向他们所代表的艺术家展现实力,以赢取收藏家的信心–相信他们所购买的艺术品,是蓝筹股级的投资。


Auction-Lot 57 Abdul Latiff Mohidin %22Landskap Rimba 96%22 (1996) 81cm x 203cm Oil on Canvas)1

Abdul Latiff Mohidin

Landskap Rimba
1996 • 81cm x 203cm • Oil on Canvas
KLAS Art Auction 24/05/2015, Lot 57
Price Realised: RM601,800

Auction-Yusof Ghani %22Biring LXX%22 (2007) Oil on Canvas 183cm x 183cm1

Yusof Ghani

Bring LXX
2007 • 183cm x 183cm • Oil on canvas
KLAS Art Auction 18/01/2015, Lot 48
Price Realised: RM313,600

Auction-Lot 109 Chia Yu Chian

Chia Yu Chian

The Waterfall
1983 • 97cm x 184cm • Oil on Canvas
Masterpiece KL 02/08/2015, Lot 109
Price Realised: RM156,800

Auction-Ahmad Zakii Anwar, Legong 4, 1997, Acrylic on canvas, 120 x 180cm, 2 panels

Ahmad Zakii Anwar

Legong 4
1997 • 120cm x 180cm • Acrylic on Canvas
KLAS Art Auction 24/05/2015, Lot 66
Price Realised: RM118,000

Image(s) courtesy of KLAS Art Auction and Masterpiece Auction

The Art of Human Psyche

One artist’s quest for artistic exploration and freedom

The human mind is an interesting subject, and it has captured the attention of Malaysian artist, Phillip Wong, who since 2009 has delved deep into the human psyche to explore its effect on the human condition. In his quest to find the answer to a question he likes – ‘why humans always got problem?’ – Wong has created a series of incredible artwork that capture his exploration of the human brain, emotions and the subconscience aptly titled The Human Mind.

One of Wong’s signature artistic styles is transparent glass painting – a style he developed using Perspex, glass, wood, canvas and transparent glass paint. ‘Transparent glass painting is see-through, and it allows you to see through the surface and look at what the work means,’ said Wong. He had started working on transparent glass paintings beginning with his Daun series 1993 which culminated in his first solo presentation in 2006. Now, with The Human Mind series, Wong has once again channelled his artistic impressions through transparent glass paint, this time on canvas.

Wong, born and raised in the idyllic town of Seremban, is among the most prolific contemporary artists in the country. A graduate of Malaysia Institute of Art (MIA), art has always been a big part of his life, a passion of his since he was a boy. ‘I dreamed of becoming an artist when I was just 6 years old and it was a dream born out of passion for art,’ said Wong in an interview with EZ. In the 15 years since graduating from MIA, Wong charged into the local art world with full-force before establishing ArtSeni Gallery in 2005.

For Wong, being an artist does not end with just creating art but he sees it as his mission to create awareness on art. This for him takes various forms, including building and gathering support for himself as well as his artists, exploring new avenues for exhibiting art works, and to promote Malaysian art internationally. In his efforts to serve the larger artistic community of Malaysia, he sat on the Board of Trustees for the National Visual Art Gallery of Malaysia for four years. Another notch in his artistic journey was nailed when Wong was awarded the much coveted Grand Prize at the 2007 Asia Art Award in Seoul, Korea. The following saw Wong being appointed as a committee member of the Asia Invitation Art Exhibition in Seoul, a position he has continued to hold.

Not just confined to fine art, Wong is also a dedicated and passionate practitioner of performing arts. He was bitten by the acting bug in 1996 when he made his stage debut in the drama About Them. From acting, Wong has gone on to produce his own shows. One of them which he is especially proud of is Twelve plus One.  The show combined his two passions – fine arts and performing arts – to create a spectacular experience for the viewers with its unique concept. In 2012, Wong starred in Passion & Drama, which he said would be his last appearance on stage for the time being. However, his support for the local performing arts scene would never wane. ‘I am now more focused on supporting them behind the scenes and supporting them unconditionally,’ said Wong.

2012 also saw Wong pulling the plug on ArtSeni Gallery, which at that time was located in Lot 10, Bukit Bintang. The decision to move away from managing a physical gallery came from his desire to focus on his paintings and to promote the local artists. This move also gave him the freedom to curate exhibitions outside of Kuala Lumpur with TIGA: The Intellectual in Generation of Aesthetics and The Journey Continues. Both the exhibitions were held in Penang in the second half of 2013. Wong was successful in introducing Kuala Lumpur-based artists to the public in Penang. With The Human Mind continuing Wong’s trajectory of artistic freedom and expression, 2014 looks like it is going to be yet another good year for this artist.