Painting : Grandmother (Amang Rahman Jubair - 1976)

Title : "Grandmother"

Artist : Amang Rahman Jubair

Year : 1976

Oil on canvas.

Dimension : 70 x 90 cms.

Amang Rahman’s painting “Nenek” (1976) expresses vulnerability and loneliness of an old woman. Her wrinkled face and how other old women figures disappear into the horizon emphasise the gloomy mood. The vastness of the landscape and skies that are empty rather than spacious make the overall atmosphere even more sombre and heavy. Indeed, this is one of Rahman’s rather surrealist works characterised with an odd depiction and pleacement of objects in empty spaces with multiple perspectives.

Since 1970’s Indonesian modern paintings increasingly began showcasing a diversity of individual expressions, giving prominence to personal problems and presenting them within the social and political context. This marked the onset of the humanist universal lyricism paradigm as the aesthetics of populist contextualism was dying out.

In the painting “Nenek”, Amang Rahman expresses his appreciation for universal human values, appreciating desolation and the worldliness of life. The depiction of old women disappearing into the horizon symbollises the inevitability of age, of humans moving towards the finality of life.