Ahmad Oka is the Yogyakartan artist known for his drawings, even a number of bands in Yogyakarta, Australia to Czech Republic worked with him. To name a few, there are Dom 65, Broozers, Mother Mars, Goonbag Colostomy, and Bounce-Bounce. Furthermore, he called it a commission work for with the bands, “I documented Illustration of bands who support me, now I support them.” Recently he is obsessed with life after Pralaya, or post-apocalyptic, and he made a solo exhibition in the perspective that life after Pralaya filled with half monster creatures and human. The culture is just a residue of what was there before. With that idea, he interpreted it with some sort of murals on the wall and laser engraving which was created digitally engineered. The post-apocalyptic life is perplexed in murals all over the gallery space. Monsters, human and combinations of various creatures before civilization are portrayed dreadfully within bold-faced lines.
This time, Oka did not draw all the murals manually, but he scavenged millions of images available on the internet, and then process them using Photoshop program, because visual scavenger is a new phenomenon in contemporary art today. Questions are raised because it means this phenomenon makes artists stripped down their capabilities, and have more trust in digital engineering. If this is happening, what more can we expect? But then, sometimes when it comes to arts, it doesn’t have to always be knowledgeable, it could be surprising, and what Oka did is breathtaking. Moreover about the visual scavenger is that they refused to create a new form. They believe the task of the artist should (also) find what has been created and placed in a new context. That’s a good reason to try new things.
Oka had a lot of exhibitions beforehand with odd but acceptable visions, for example, back in the days, he made an illustration work in silkscreen print with pictorial figure resembling devil face Barack Obama inspired by news about the Bible series on the History Channel, but it wasn’t explained why he brought that work. Huh? Again, arts are surprising!
June 11th – 26th 2014
Everyday, 10am – 10pm
Kedai Kebun Forum and Restaurant
Jl. Tirtodipuran No. 3, Yogyakarta
P: 0274 376114
Words by Febrina Anindita
Photos doc. Ahmad Oka