Ethical Feelings


Yonatan Rumion (1981)


Art Exhibition in The Oberoi Hotel, Bali.
From 03 May to 05 June, 2017.


Yonatan Rumion


Lately, the government's development in several regions in Indonesia has attracted protests from the public. Why? This is related to the problem of the ecological impact of the area in which it arises. The destruction of the environment and the interests of large industries is a scourge for the people, the pros and cons should be taken seriously. Globalization is overwhelming the local cultural heritage.

Bali Island as a tourist destination, keeps the charm of paradise clad in a dazzling tradition. Tourism development, based on beaches and cultural patrimony, is like a double-edged knife, without clear rules obviously, those activities will kill the natural environment and the cultural attraction. The history of the nation from the royal period, colonial until independence, recorded it in gold ink; "The tradition of Balinese society is a bastion for the sustainability of itself that must be maintained".
Although only with five years in Bali, Yonatan Rumion sees, nowadays, that tension between the tourism industry and local culture is increasingly felt, such as large land sale, the conversion of public space and land privatization. This problem is like a fire in the chaff, ironic indeed because in addition to drawing on the road Yonatan also creates murals for several hotels, restaurants and villas. During our discussion about this issue Yonatan said:
“The growing tourism industry and the massive capitalist investments are not the only causes of the soil consumption; also the populations contribute at this disaster with the personal enrichment dream, which comes with the loss of traditions, identity and self-esteem”.
Appears in his work entitled “Take One Thousands Lost” the figure of a frog that stuck out his long tongue to catch a crown, the crown in his iconography represents the brand of capitalism, on the frog back there is a bag that represents the Indonesian cultural background, how the observer can see at the same time that when the tongue touch the crown, the bag get breaks and start to lose the cultural roots. The poetic discourse represented in his work is a hide polemic message against the globalism side that is destroying our cultural roots.
Yonatan’s paintings and drawings are in comic style; Yonatan Rumion is also listed as a contributor of the Kukomikan comic compilation. The power of lines, figures and texts in his work can build interactive narratives. The objects close to daily life are deformed to be straightforward and sometimes mischievous. As a street art artist, his sensitivity and point of view is helpful in understanding his perspective, on the streets he is required to dialogue with many people so he can see from several sides, individual observations as well as public observations. When referring to the above problems, the work of Yonatan Rumion is partiality to life itself. I believe that talking about the real world is how we dialogue with ourselves, using our energy for the good things, trying to build awareness and responding about life changing wisely.


Ismu Ismoyo

(Art writer) 



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