Artist Bio

    (b. 1889, Plaji, South Sumatra – d. 1979, Padang, West Sumatra)

    Wakidi (est.1889) born in Plaju, Palembang, South Sumatra was a Javanese descent. His parents originated from Semarang migrated and worked in Plaju, Sumatra. Since his youth, he was fond of painting and his talent was further nurtured when he enrolled in Kweekschool (often referred to as School for the Aristocrats- Teacher’s School), Bukit Tinggi. In this school, Wakidi begins to seriously pursue his study in painting under the guidance of his teachers. His themes consist of primarily landscapes such as canyons, fields, mountains, and rivers. Wakidi graduated in 1908 and continues to teach in his alma-mater. He also taught in INS Kayu Tanam in the 40’s and after the independence of Indonesia onwards, he became a middle school teacher in Bukit Tinggi.

    After graduating, Wakidi was sent to Semarang to train under a Dutch artist named Van Dijk. During this era, Wakidi had become an acclaimed landscape painter. He was known to depict the landscapes and lives in West Sumatra. In the national caliber and its modern art development timeline, Wakidi was grouped in the same era as Abdullah Suriosubrata and Mas Pirngadi. They are known now as the Mooi Indie painters. In his lifetime, he taught numerous students, although not many followed his artistic footsteps. He continued to teach in Bukit Tinggi until the late 50’s and continued to paint for the rest of his life. Although he lived far from the hubbub of the arts in Java, as a teacher he taught some of Indonesia’s leading figures like Mohammad Hatta and General A.H. Nasution. Wakidi received the Anugrah Seni Republik Indonesia (Republic of Indonesia Art Medalion) in 1983. He passed away in Padang, West Sumatra in 1983.

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