2019/ September— A Year in Java, ACM Singapore.
An installation of curtains of povertquilts that made a room within a room. By day the public is invited to sew buttons in memories of their loved ones. By evening, the public participation to sew a single long sarong become part of a group performance to atone for the wrongs of Raffles in Colonial Java.
Museum public audience were asked to hand sew one or more buttons in remembrance of their deceased ancestors. This took place on the north panel of Povertyquilts entitled A Year in Java to commemorate my grandfather's year in Java, Povertyquilts refer to the stylistic panel of denim cloths savaged from sweatshops in Yogyakarta and rejoined into larger fabric that looks like topography of rice fields and water. The name is also picked to remember the year of hardship my grandmother has to endure in 1948 when my grandfather was stranded in Palembang.
On the south facing panel of povertyquilts entitled Parangkusuma, my Javanese assistants dressed in court clothing were embroidering a mapping of Raffles' invasion of the palace of Yogyakarta from memory. This particular povertyquilt is also layout to reflect actual topography of Java, the Gunung Merapi, the mandala of the palace ground and the Queen of the South Sea.
A 12 m long sarong made of cut up squares of traditional Javanese weave is pieced together every evening by public participants which eventuate into a group performance of a rite in memory of the loot by Raffles of East India Company at the fall of Yogyakarta court.. With Erson Padapiran leading with a trumpet and singing the Babad of the Inglis.
the center piece is an eternal light object fabricated from composite of Javanese rice pots and kettles with text in Javanese (taken from Raffles' tome of book, History of Java) that becomes an epitaph for Raffles in Java. This object of a domesticated monument is one of a series of various proportion named the Kettle Call Pots Black.
more photos here: https://www.icloud.com/sharedalbum/#B1052plgjKKfVL