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Patterns of being: home in Bali

Batiks by Sandy Infield in Simultaneous Exhibition in Yogyakarta and Bali May-June 2011.

(5/3/2011) Identity is tied to location. And location can be a function of either birth or choice. A simultaneous exhibition in Central Java and Bali of batik painting by Englishwoman Sandy Infield explores how Indonesia and the ancient art form of batik have impacted her identity.

Sandy Infield's commitment to batik as an art form has roots in the Javanese landscapes that unfurled before her eyes as she landed  at Yogyakarta's Adisucipto Airport in 2009 and the visits that followed to batik ateliers in Yogya.

Leaving a lasting impression, she embarked on a artistic sojourn from her studio in Sanur, Bali, mulling over the ideas and feelings that were planted on that trip and her encounter with batik artistry there and in the batik clothing of colleagues and friends she encountered in daily life. She concluded that whether these multifaceted identities are represented in the textiles of batik clothing or the landscapes that we choose to call our home, these fragile works of art give insight into how the human psyche reflects its surroundings and projects hopes onto vast skies, the universal canvas of the imagination.

Identity is present in the threads man weaves into being on nature's canvas. It is memory, however, that endows magical powers to this union between human endeavour and nature's forces. Longing is born to tie man not only to place and culture, but also to an ongoing process of identification. The landscapes unique to Java and Bali - of terraced paddy fields hugging the feet of cloud-draped majestic volcanoes, are evoked in batik motifs created by Sandy Infield in a tribute that pays homage to the literal threads that tie the Javanese and Balinese to their identity.

The exhibitions held in both Yogyakarta and Bali represent an endeavour by the English-born artist to pay tribute to these locales. The batik tradition she admires is her point of departure in appreciating the psychological impact of nature's patterns that are recorded and continuously re-created in batik. The unique techniques she has developed are her in-kind contribution for her lessons learnt, for they have opened up new possibilities of imagery within the treasure trove of traditional batik symbolism.

More About Sandy Infield

A graduate of the Slade (UK), Sandy Infield painted in Italy on a Boise scholarship for a year before sharing a London studio with Bridget Riley. In her early artistic explorations, Sandy turned her painting styles inside out with portraits of trapeze artists and textile-wrapped actors. After a decade of living in Asia, the artist's solid grounding in portraiture, landscapes and still-life, coupled with her ongoing passion for textiles, has led her to explore identity through batik-scapes.

The current exhibitions in Yogyakarta and Bali are curated by Kadek Krishna Adidharma

Patterns of Being: Home in Bali

May 16 – June 18, 2011

Danu Gallery @ Lakeview

Penelokan, Kintamani
Preview: 19:00 – 21:00, Saturday, May 14, 2011

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Patterns of Belonging: Homage to Java

May 23– June 6, 2011

Sangkring Artspace

Nitiprayan, Yogyakarta