Art:1 – The Aesthetic Platform for the Thinking Mind

by Anita Suparta
5th December 2014
Whether you consider yourself an art aficionado or amateur, count it a blessing to be aware of prominent artists who have worked round the clock to refine their skill and to breathe in their brilliant ideas.

As Friday rolls around, the weekend planning usually kicks into full gear. But with our typically tedious schedules, nothing is more than inspiration. So instead of doing the usual, why not break the routine and celebrate the exquisite works of world-class talents? Although art galleries are thin on the ground, Art:1New Museum and Art Space in Jalan Rajawali, Kemayoran stands out in a compelling manner and makes quite an impression. Even before you settle yourself in, several ‘construction workers’ hanging on the scaffolding in front of the building will greet you and get you artistically warmed up. This particular piece by Sunaryo, titled “Titik Jeda,” depicts Art:1’s vision – allowing more room for art to grow.

After taking a quick tour, it becomes evident that the three-storey building is a work of art by itself. The New Museum’s more conventional architecture is separated from Art Space’s contemporary oval-shaped design. Comparing these two different dynamics, the sophisticated ambience of the museum sets up its climate to fit the finest paintings by experts such as Hendra Gunawan, Heri Dono, and Srihadi Soedarsono.

All the little details, like the blurb on the wall or the arrangement of the paintings, make it easier for the artists to inject their interpretations into the visitors’ minds.  Do not be intimidated just yet; the guide at Art:1 is ready to give you a thorough explanation and help you absorb all of these ideas, from religious values to national pride.

The Art Space on the other side of the construction, however, feels less intense and more casual. This gallery features many rising young talents from Indonesia and other neighboring countries. If you are particularly fond of a piece, you can even purchase the artwork in this section and enjoy it in the comfort of your home. Monica Gunawan, the managing director of Art:1, guarantees their continuous effort to seasonally bring in new collections to the gallery. From paintings, sculptures, mixed media, art videos, installations and photography, Art Space proves that art is a far cry from being dull.

The experience of Art is always personal and diverse. Nonetheless, the existence of a gallery is a refreshing edge to our urban culture that offers everything instantly and easily. Monica shared her rule of thumb to make the trip to an art gallery more fulfilling, instead of overwhelming. She suggested her visitors to stick to one piece that they love the most and go home with only that in mind. Then on their next trip to a gallery, they can find a couple pieces by the same artist or from the same genre.

According to Monica, doing the same simple routine on every visit will build up our knowledge of art based on the initial piece that we fell in love with. She also added, “You will always take away something from the museum.” Whether learning new art terminology or analysing one piece of art that is most striking to you, a gallery like Art:1 is effective for informal learning.

If you are still having second thoughts about stretching yourself into this aesthetic department, you can always slip in a little coffee break during your visit. The spacious café on the first floor of Art:1 serves only simple beverages, but it makes the perfect inspirational corner on a lazy afternoon. All in all, whether you prefer a casual walk around the gallery, a deeper study on various artworks or a relaxing tea break before deciding which art piece to bring home, rest assured that you will have a pleasant retreat in Art:1 New Museum and Art Space.



Jl. Rajawali Selatan Raya No. 3

Monday and Public Holiday: Closed

Tuesday – Saturday                : 10am – 6pm

Sunday                                     : 10am-4pm

Ticket                                       : IDR 75,000 – (Fee for the New Museum, Free of Charge for the Art Space)