(b. 1975, Bukittinggi, West Sumatra, Indonesia)
Co-founder of the Jendela Art Group, Handiwirman Saputra is known for his manipulation of mundane everyday materials into mediums of artistic exploration. By modifying and repositioning mediums such as cloth, human hair, corrugated roof sheets and plastic wrap, he challenges expectations and transforms the banal into the majestic. Saputra’s works are often reminiscent of landscapes, figures, vegetation and various memories but at the same time, they also resist association with distinct metaphors or symbols.
Saputra pushes the boundaries of the still-life genre. Vaguely evocative of subjects in reality, his non-objective works are usually either monumental or miniature. This shift in scale further spurs the viewer to reconsider their relationship with the everyday materials involved. He then allows others into his perception of the world, a perspective that gives power to the ordinary. Reacting to the politicised works produced by artists under the Suharto regime, Saputra deliberately forgoes any sociopolitical character in his work. Alternatively, he leans on organic abstraction and playful handling of art forms.
A fine arts graduate from the prestigious Indonesian Institute of Arts (ISI) in Yogyakarta, Saputra is gaining international recognition with noteworthy exhibitions; “Everything You Can Imagine is Real #1”, Galerie Christian Hosp, Berlin, “Contemporaneity: Contemporary Art in Indonesia”, Museum of Contemporary Art Shanghai, “Pleasure of Chaos-Inside New Indonesian Art”, Primo Marella Gallery, Milan in 2010, “Re-Play #6”, Office For Contemporary Art (OFCA) International, Yogyakarta, Indonesia in 2014, and “Material Matters, Tolot/heuristic Shinonome Gallery in Tokyo, Japan, 2015.