Painting : Tanah Lot (Rusli - 1977)

Title : "Tanah Lot"

Artist : Rusli

Year : 1977

Oil on canvas.

Dimension : 65 x 50 cms.

The painting “Tanah Lot” (1977) is an abstraction of the famous Tanah Lot scenery in Bali. However, like his other paintings, the priority is given to the poetic air of the object’s abstraction through the essential strokes. More than that, Rusli also likes colour very much, so that the structure and impression of objects are born through the intensity of colours. In this painting, the cliff at Tanah Lot is constructed through a weaving of agile lines. To represent the sea, Rusli used five wide brushes of blue around the cliff. By placing a cloud above the Tanah Lot cliff, Rusli perfects himself as an essentialist selecting his objects with great care. Despite the agile rhythm, the painting is always maintained in a tight composition.

In the modern world, when artists are faced with a host increasingly complex and fast-changing phenomena, an artist must intensify his observation. For that, in his engagement and andeavors with objects, a painter would go through a process of selection and maturing, reflecting on his objects. Rusli, in his artistic process, explores his objects first through observation and reflection. The objects, expressed through transparent lines and placed in voids, bring clarity to Rusli’s struggle when he ultimately captures the essence of these objects.

This tendency is a phenomenon of lyrical art that was rarely followed by other painters in Indonesia of that era (1950’s). Rusli’s paintings are considered to be Neoimpressionist, semi abstract, or sometimes expressionist.