Melintas Arus

by Hazell Charman

“It is entirely possible that behind the perception of our senses, worlds are hidden of which we are unaware.”

—Albert Einstein

You know how a song could remind you of a particular roofless evening with a loved one, or how a certain smell takes you back in time to a moment from your younger years? Everyday, we’re surrounded by external stimuli that compel our senses to identify and react. Information we receive will turn into electrical stimulation our brain can comprehend. The conversion from one form of energy to another then allows us to experience the world. But those are only what happen physically. Psychologically, we as human beings play a big part in making sense of those stimuli. Eventually, what our senses hear, see, feel, taste, and smell influence how we perceive the intricacies of this world, this life, even ourselves.

Though the way our senses physically detect stimuli is inevitable, we are, to some extent, psychologically responsible for deciding how they may affect us. We get to choose which ones get our utmost attention. Even the seemingly unremarkable choices we make in what we hear, what we see daily, could significantly impact our lives as we voluntarily give them the power to change us and shape who we are along the way.

As we now further realize that our sensory abilities and our minds work together in order for us to thoroughly experience the world, I encourage you to wander around. Choose what you want to hear, see, feel, taste, and smell. Fearlessly, and mindfully. Let them influence you, mold you, drive you, or guide you to a new path of discovery. These pieces of art are only bridges to all that you can truly encounter. They may take you to a place where you’ll discover more about yourself, parts of you you never knew. While your brain and senses do their fair share of impressive jobs, it’s your portion to determine the way you want to wholly immerse yourself in the world: in its most pleasurable and most miserable parts, and everything in between. Make sense of this world, all that’s beyond, the way only you know how.

M. Irfan

Terpisah dari Hujan

At this moment, your sense of sight is observing the majestic waterfall. Yet you could imagine what your other senses might detect. Close your eyes and you’re sitting under the waterfall, it’s forcefully falling on your head, dripping to your back.

M. Irfan’s five month journey and research through the island of Sumatra lent him what he needed to create this installation. Standing apart from his photo realistic paintings, Terpisah dari Hujan intends to lure the audience in. It asks you to become a part of it. What if you were a stone sitting still under it? How many years would you let the water carve you until it finally breaks you? Or would you rather be a fish swimming in the current of its river? How would you let the waterfall affect you?

Julian Abraham “Togar”

Drummer’s gonna’ drum

As Togar takes us, or specifically our ears, on a journey under the sun in Yogyakarta, he lets us hear him drumming on many different objects made of diverse materials. This work might take us back to the sound-oriented ASMR videos trend flooding all over the internet. From rippling waters to tree leaves to the famous street name sign of Malioboro, he gave us time to find out which sounds are pleasing to our ears and which aren’t, according to our personal preferences. 

We might begin to wonder what made him choose every single object he drummed on. What he heard each time he was on the way to a different location, closing the distance between one object to another. Drumming his way through this warm and lively city, Togar allows us to reflect on the way we discern the sounds we hear, which voices we dim important to listen to, which ones we let drown along with other noises, and how we let them define who we are by figuring out the ones we truly believe in.

Cinanti Astria Johansjah (KENI)

For Your Highness

a nonchalant friend,

a highly boopable snoot,

a pleading gaze,

a few fanning out whiskers,

a pair of airplane ears,

and four murderous mittens.

have you ever felt an itch you can’t resist?

when you gave in to your senses, where did they take you?

Dewi Fortuna Maharani

Subsequently, per se

Looking at these glimpses of ordinary moments and places, we can’t help but feel safe. Dewi Fortuna Maharani’s love of taking and keeping photos out of the mundane propels her to paint these humble scenes. Though the scenes we see are limited to only squares, they do not fail to depict whole situations beyond the cropping and the details that caught her eye.

They deliver a sense of comfort and familiarity, an ability for us to somehow look back and feel like we’d been there. The different colors faithfully exhibit different times of day. These cropped views capture how Maharani remembers those moments. Carrying us in, while holding them close to her heart.

Restu Ratnaningtyas

The Line Crosser & Have a Nice Day #4

“keep going,” they said.

even after all the madness,

time doesn’t pause for anybody.

I drag myself through another day.

Breathless, tangled, messy.

“keep going,” they reminded.

time certainly doesn’t pause for anybody

I drag limbs through another day.

choosing to see the beauty

in things that are uncertain.

In each one, at least,

I will always have hope.

kokok p. sancoko

dari seberang kolam (from across the pond)

As Will Durant once said, “We are what we repeatedly do,” we are given the chance to pause and reflect through Sancoko’s work. He delicately wove painted canvas strips, each warp faithfully meeting their wefts. Perhaps we can see the colors blending, forming some kind of patterns, or specks of bright ones popping to catch our eye. Whichever one we see, we are witnessing an idea made concrete by Sancoko’s patience in repetitions.

They might just inspire us to relentlessly do the things we are meant to do, like waves perpetually coming back, over and over, to kiss the shore. They might just remind us to be unwavering in the way we weave our own dreams. And as Sancoko left the work open, may we make sure to always leave ourselves a room humble and spacious enough to grow.


Melintas Arus
Pameran kelompok/Group exhibition of

Cinanti Astria Johansjah (KENI)
Dewi Fortuna Maharani
Julian Abraham “Togar”
M. Irfan
kokok p. sancoko
Restu Ratnaningtyas

dengan penulis/with writers Alif Ibrahim & Hazell Charman
17 November – 5 December 2023

Jl. Cilandak Tengah No. 11 Cilandak, Jakarta Selatan


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