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Banung Grahita, The Mighty, Digital Animation, Looping 1440 px x 1080 px, 30 fps, 2021

Exhibition: Selected Work

Banung Grahita, Big Big World, Single Channel Digital Animation, 1440 px x 1080 px, 30 fps, 2021

Banung Grahita, Peaceful World, Single Channel Digital Animation, 1440 px x 1080 px, 30 fps, 2021


Humans genetically inherit the ability to communicate symbolically through language, and that's all that allows us to form complex social organizations. The most complex forms of social organization can actually be found in urban communities. In contrast to rural areas, urban areas are the center of a country's economic and political activities. Still, in an era of mass migration, economic globalization, and the rapid circulation of information, cities now represent a locality of global power, a symbol of heterogeneity and the meeting and overlapping of various cultural forms. As a complex organizational form, urban areas provide cultural heterogeneity, which often creates conflict and intolerance but potentially grew creative perspective and a new way of thinking, including the creative process. 


The creative process has an extraordinary concept culturally but is closely related to individuality. Culture, in this sense, contextually takes place at the same time as the perpetrators. In urban artists, urban culture, which is also marked by the development of information technology, can be seen from the traces of their works of art. Artists in urban areas tend to follow the development of technology and information. They publish their works through social media such as Instagram, blogs, personal websites, digital platforms, and virtual exhibitions. Now we are all hit by the covid 19 disaster, making all of our life sectors run online and even virtual. Besides that, urban artists, in this case in Bandung, like to form discussion communities both online and offline. Online through groups on social media, offline at alternative art spaces or collectives and communities. This characteristic culminates in the young generation. Social groups have a significant role in how they define their self-concept through their circle.  


Banung Grahita (b.1983) is an important Bandung artist who also grew with these circumstances. He graduated from ITB in 2006. Not too long from graduation, he with his other fellows rent a house at the Buton Street, Bandung. They build a collective was known as Buton Kultur, which contains visual artists from various medium interests. They conducted some art projects, collaborations, to public discussions and became one of the hubs for the visual art movement in Bandung. It was very fascinating for me back then when I was a student. But it didn't last long because some of its members, including Banung himself, decided to continue their studies abroad.  


Before Buton Kultur was gathered, Banung was also the initiator of a video artist collective named Devil Chips around 2004. Devil Chips are Banung Grahita, Yusuf Ismail, and Erik Pauhrizi. They came from different disciplines, and it was kind of the hallmark of their artistic style. It less manifested uniquely in Banung's visual character of his works. You can see through his works at this exhibition, of course.  


Devil Chips, as the spirit is still existing until now, rebranding themself as the challenge from one curator, they now become Kutub Tiga. Kutub Tiga begins their first film experimental project at 2020 tittle Sang Seniman, written by Banung Grahita and Erik Pauhrizi. Their philosophical name came from kutub ketiga or the third pole. We know that the third pole is related to the concept of Everest as the highest point of the earth. But in this case, the third pole related to the other center of video art, film, and animation that we knew has two central poles, west is the US, and the other in Europe. The concept is they want to build the conceptual center for video art, film, and animation as the reaction of the other poles.


Banung comes with the characteristics of academic artists who are critical to the art field and current social and life issues but with a playful, parodical approach using visual signs. He uses animation as a medium and as a language to be more relevant. He spoke about the environmental issue with "Seeing the World of the Dead Trees" (2011) and "Siklus" (2013) to power relation of gaze that builds from the panopticon from "The Eyes of Do - The Eyes of Don't" in 2013. In the Algorithm of Perception, we can assume that he talks to us about how our perception is built uniformly from what we absorbed from our digital footprint. This what we are now and what we describe who we are.  


Congratulation Banung, for your solo exhibition. I always see you as a senior and now colleague who are inspiring me a lot. I hope everyone who visits your work today feels the same thing. Enjoy the signs and cheers! 

A Tiny Essay for Algorithm of Perception

Bandung, 10 June 2021 


Kiki Rizky Soetisna P


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