Tiger OrchidArt Basel, Online4 - 6 December 2020
ROH Tiger Orchid

"You will ask yourself questions like: what is the history of wind? How did this gust arrive here? Where did it come from and who am I to be blown by it? The storm is blowing people back to their homes, blowing goods back to their factories, blowing factories back to their countries, blowing people back into their past…

– Hito Steyerl, in Liquidity.Inc

ROH Tiger Orchid
ROH Tiger Orchid

Kei Imazu (b. 1980, Yamaguchi, Japan) and Bagus Pandega (b. 1985, Jakarta, Indonesia) have been developing for Art Basel OVR: Miami Beach, a site-specific project that takes places in an abandoned shopping mall in Bandung. The choice of site is both necessary from a health and safety standpoint as well as in acting as a more tangible representation of the immediate implications of the global pandemic in relation to how spaces have changed in function. Tiger Orchid presents observations regarding the velocity by which these centers for human activity have decayed. Time itself appears to have recently and abruptly shape-shifted into an abstraction that accelerates, slows, shifts, expands, and contracts in a seemingly constant sense of flux.

Through painting, Imazu continues an examination into the intersections of physicality and immateriality as it relates to digital syntax. She considers the corporeal, as well as the cavities that exist within the body, as spaces of ontological inquiry. The concrete spaces surrounding the work, then, act as an entity in and of itself encapsulating her works, which act as structures that absorb the surrounding energies. The exhibition Tiger Orchid presents a body of work by Kei Imazu produced in the year 2020 that reflects upon the human condition as it relates to the acceleration by which human civilization is changing and progressing. There is a sense of synchronicity in the works, forming a dialogue between each other that folds past, present, and future into a new entity itself. The suite of three paintings presented for Art Basel OVR: Miami Beach act as multi-layered exploration that looks outwards as observations with a scope as wide as nation states, as well as inwards, delving into crevices within the human body itself. Each work begins as digital renderings compositionally structured through the utilization of various computer programs (Adobe Dimensions, Sketchup, etc), which are then painted meticulously in great detail upon the canvas, and this way of thinking is then interpolated as well in presenting the works within a physical framework that is analogous to the digital environment.

Pandega presents a series of electronic installations that delve into the interrelationships of labor, mass-production, and distribution. Indirect implications to how pre-existing behavioral patterns have and continue to change further at a rapid pace then present new questions, such as: In this unappeasable desire to progress, are we actually moving in the same place? His work Remaining Ending takes the form of a complex assemblage that contains an electronic system connected to a taishōgoto (a Japanese stringed musical instrument), LED panels, old Indonesian primary school textbooks, triggered by a modular synthesizer that itself picks up the electric impulses generated by a living orchid. Remaining Ending utilizes sculptural metaphor as means to communicate a nuanced, multifocal perspective regarding the confluence of histories that have shaped what has become today an ‘’Indonesian identity’’. Even though memories of colonial influence, repressive typecasts promulgated by the state educational system, as well as defunct structures of labor and industry may collectively be forgotten, its apparition still remains inseparable upon the many layers of its social fabric.

Born 1985, Jakarta, Indonesia
Lives and works in Bandung, Indonesia

Working primarily through the medium of installation, Bagus Pandega often challenges pre-conditioned relationships between objects and its viewer. In his works, Pandega assembles various electronic systems as ‘modules’ and explores objects such as voice recorders, cassette and record players, lamps and electronic circuit boards— among others— to construct his works. Many of his artworks become activated through the interaction of movement, sound and light. 

Pandega graduated from Bandung Institute of Technology with a Bachelor of Arts (Fine Art) in 2008, majoring in sculpture. Pandega’s selected solo exhibitions include A Pervasive Rhythm at Yamamoto Gendai, Tokyo, Japan (2018); Random Black, ROH Projects, Jakarta, Indonesia (2016); and A Monument That Tells Anything, Cemeti Art House, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2015). Selected group exhibitions include Frieze Seoul with ROH, Seoul, South Korea (2022); WAGIWAGI at documenta fifteen, Hübner areal, Kassel, Germany (2022); Declaring Distance: Bandung — Leiden, Selasar Sunaryo Art Space, Bandung, Indonesia (2022); ArtJog MMXIX: Common Space, Jogja National Museum, Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2019); Paris Internationale with ROH, Paris, France (2018); all of which feature his collaborative practice with Kei Imazu; Art Basel Hong Kong with ROH, Hong Kong (2023); The 10th Asia Pacific Triennial at QAGOMA, Brisbane, Australia (2021-2022); Tiger Orchid presented at Art Basel OVR: Miami Beach (2020); Condo London at Project Native Informant, London, UK (2020); Ripples: Continuity in Indonesian Contemporary Art at Taipei Dangdai, Taipei, Taiwan (2019); Distorted Alteration at Project Fulfill, Taipei, Taiwan (2018); Amsterdam Light Festival, Amsterdam, the Netherlands (2017); and Clandestine Transgression at Art Basel Hong Kong: Discoveries with ROH Projects, Hong Kong (2015). After winning third place at Bandung Contemporary Art Awards #2, Pandega completed his first residency at Le Centre Intermondes, La Rochelle, France in 2012. A nominee of the 2016 Sovereign Art Prize, Pandega had also collaborated with Adi Purnomo and Irwan Ahmett in presenting Freedome, Indonesia Pavilion at the London Design Biennale: Utopia by Design in 2016.

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Copyright belongs to The Artists

Photography by Kei Imazu and ROH
Videography by Ponti Ramanta, Kei Imazu
Music by Bagus Pandega

Courtesy of The Artists and ROH