Inauguration of Trees, by Delo Made Budiarta
Exhibition: January 25th – February 25th 2022, Sawidji Gallery
Inauguration of Trees,. the existence of the tree is the main source of ideas in this collection of works of art. This subject matter may be interpreted broadly. Trees are not only considered to have an important role for human life, but also for the entire universe. Therefore, trees have become a global issue related to environmental conservation, natural disasters, climate change, global warming, and so on.
Various environmental movements and activists have emerged to save trees. But on the other hand, a series of activities also threaten the existence of trees. Such as illegal logging, deforestation, and massive deforestation that continue to occur. This state of contradiction needs to be mediated by building awareness. Awareness of the importance of trees for life. Here, through the media of painting by raising the concept of “The Inauguration of Trees”. The concept is intended to inaugurate the tree as an important element in maintaining the harmony of the universe, both physically and spiritually.
Physically, trees are a vital element in maintaining environmental harmony both artistically and functionally. Artistically, trees are the dominant element in displaying the beauty of nature. Functionally, trees are associated with soil fertility and its practical benefits for human life. The function of such a tree is visualized in the works entitled “Harmony” and “The Tree House”.
In the work entitled “Harmony”, trees are shown as subject matter with other supporting objects in the form of farmer plowing activities, views of rice fields, rivers, and so on. The work intends to describe the harmony of human life with nature (trees).
In “The Tree House”, trees remain the subject matter interacting with birds. There, birds represent the many living things that need trees to survive. This piece hopes to make the public aware that trees are not only important for humans but also for other creatures. And hopefully by realizing that, achieve a growing harmonisation with nature that will be maintained.
For Balinese people, trees are not only meant physically, but also spiritually and magically. Physically, trees are considered as natural resources that provide many practical benefits for life.Spiritually, in Balinese Hinduism the existence of trees is associated with the teachings of Tri Hita Karana. This is the teachings centred on three causes of happiness. Especially those related to the harmonisation of human relations with nature as one of the causes of human happiness. Within this context, trees are placed as a representation of the natural environment. If human beings are able to maintain harmony with them, happiness will be achieved.
The manifestation of the spiritual values of trees is often shown visually through a ‘Poleng’ or Checkered cloth tied to certain trees. The significance of the ‘Poleng’ cloth in the spiritual life of Balinese people is expressed (among other things) through works entitled “Spiritual Relaxation” and “Anugerah Laut”. In both works, a tree wrapped in poleng cloth is shown as the main subject carrying the central meaning. Other elements such as temple buildings and activities of daily living are supporting themes to strengthen this meaning.
The combination of the main subject and the supporting elements produces a complete work structure which is expected to be able to communicate meaning while at the same time creating aesthetic value. The visual technique applied to all works is adapted from the Kamasan wayang painting technique, a classical painting technique that has emerged for centuries in Kamasan Village, Klungkung-Bali and has become a tradition.
This technique is deemed relevant to articulate the concept of “Tree Inauguration” as a global phenomenon that is still ongoing to this day. By adapting this technique, it is hoped that the works created will not be uprooted from traditional roots even though the themes raised are new phenomena that are currently attracting public attention. Hopefully the new meanings to be communicated through these works are able to arouse public awareness of the importance of trees in various aspects of life, so that they are encouraged to preserve them.Delo Made Budiarta
Inauguration of Trees
The subject of the Checkered Cloth ‘Kain Poleng’ is discussed in ‘Rembug: The Checkered Cloth of Bali’. Excerpt: ” When the checkered cloth is on a tree. It means, safe is this tree. Protected is this tree. From whatever can be done by people. Because, once there is the Checkered Cloth on a tree, it means the Tree has been made Sacred. With that truth, no one will dare to cut down or damage that tree.“
Thank you so much! we are continuing conversations on this topic for the next month. Please keep joining us on our exploration of this theme!