I Stay

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Artwork by

Yoga Mahendra


acrylic on board
180×160 cm (7 pieces)

Yoga Mahendra creates richly imaginative paintings with figures which in turn are formed by other smaller figures and scenes. The grotesque images look hellish and non-hierachical scenes in undefinable worlds of fantasy. There are street lanterns jutting out through the anatomy of the figure, whose bodies appear to consist of roads with full of struggling, laughing, drunken, happy and sad figures scattered on them.

This artwork titled “I Stay” is inspired by his mentor Ojite Budi Sutarno, whose artworks many times consisted of objects in different parts, pieces and materials, assembled as one integral moveable sculpture or as a larger installation.

“I Stay” is about 180×160 cm in size and consists of 7 painted MDF panels. Together they reminds us of Garuda, a mythological figure found in Hindu and Buddhism legends. Garuda is essentially seen as a protector with power and is shown either in the form of a giant bird with (partially) open wings or a mix of form of bird with some human features. Garuda is used as the state symbol of the Republic Indonesia and the Indonesian national airline is also called after it. The meticulously painted panels have different shapes (a head, a torso, a spread bird tail, parts of wings) and form a bird-like figure but with its bare bones, teeth and parts of the wings shaped like a pair of open hands. Painted on the panels are bizarre worlds and may contain comments on the social and religious life in Indonesia.