Rumah Gadang reflect the culture and values of Minangkabau society being matrilineal. The Rumah Gadang is owned by the women. The ownership is passed from mother to daughter
HIGHLIGHT on Career of Jang Jang Joe: He was born in Bandung, West Java, Indonesia in 29th November 1960 and grew up in Jakarta until high school. Jang is a self-taught artist, western educated and speaks Sundanese language fluently as he was born in Bandung where he lived there until he was six years old.
Jang exudes not only his immense talents, but a unique talents combination of IT skills, golfing sportsman and an artistry in painting! He briefly studied in UK then went to Australia for further formal educations and completed two post graduate degrees in Engineering Science and Master of Business Administration during his full-time employment.
Jang started his career in Information Technology (IT) and Stock Broking/Banking in Sydney, Australia. He had never took any formal education in painting. He started painting when he was 10 years old and started drawing much earlier than that.
He started scribbling chalks on the floor and filled his bedroom walls with pencil sketches, to the horror of his parents.
Through self-experiences and experimentations, he develop his own style by using material of mixed media works. He believes with practice he can make great paintings in any media: pencil and pen drawings or sketches, pastels and crayons, also watercolor and charcoal.
How many paintings has he done so far?
Jang lost count and never actually tallied them. Probably about 50 oil paintings? he is not so sure, but most of them are on display in his Facebook album anyway.
The oil and acrylic paintings are mostly kept in Sydney Australia and some in Jakarta. A number of paintings have been given away to friends. No one single person actually hold more than two work of his he said.
If Jang could use analogy of addiction, then he is simply addicted to painting and do not paint for the pursuit of money.
At times, Jang just could not put a brush down just as a reader could not put a good book down and must go on reading. Once he is immersed in his painting, he would be blissfully live in a world of his own. Travelling is a wonderful journey with promise of delights in the end. Delights from other people’s pleasant reactions when they see Jang’s finished painting.
He has a realist character with a touch of impressionist! In Jang’s opinion, the term of “painting” describes both the act and the result of the action. Jang had settled on a realistic painting style as his own brand of paintings. Jang has never actually go to any length to subscribe to a certain technique or a certain style. Jang does not label and pigeon hole himself to any particular style.
He observes what he see closely, interpret them and put them on canvas. Typically, he has certain degrees of planning at the beginning. But once he started, the brush would often takes over and the “plan” evolves as the painting takes shape. He assesses and improvises as he paint along, he might ended up with totally different painting to what he planned at the beginning. It doesn’t really matter to him as long as the result is good, Jang said. Worrying less about the outcome and enjoying the process of creating art is the best advice he would give to any would-be artist.
Art for art’s sake
A work for art seeks and hold full attention and time. Surprisingly, producing paintings have always been “effortless” with no burden of will or reluctance, Jang emphasized. Probably because he has always been producing them by taking his own time, in his own pace and with no commercial pressure from anyone. No strings attached!
Jang did them because he wanted to, which gave him a great deal of satisfactions and lifted his spirit. This is the time to contemplate and put insights into a tangible piece of art.
Jang has never joined any painting exhibition yet. The problem is that his paintings are spread away between Sydney and Jakarta and some even in the hand of friends. “But perhaps it is now ripe for me to hold one in Jakarta soon” he said. Jang now has enough paintings to make it worthwhile to get his works exhibited.
The next five years in Art & Painting world
Jang would like to see himself as a recognized contributor with his own brand of paintings. Jang would love to share his passion with, and be surrounded by fellow artists in Indonesia or globally. “It is so much easier to teach yourself on how to be a great artist by learning from established artists” he said. Jang would like to learn from them to develop his own style and become a great artist himself.
So, which paintings give him the most satisfaction?
Judging from the “Likes” he got on his Facebook page, the best painting is the “Lilypads” painting below. “It was painted in Australia but I have it here with me in Jakarta”.
The next best painting in his opinion would be the “Poppy Flowers” quartet canvas painting below. “It was, or should I say they were, made as a house warming gift to a friend in Sydney”.
“The most satisfying painting to me personally must be the “Sawah Landscape” I did recently. That one was given away to a high school friend of mine from New York when I attended a high school mini re-union in Jakarta recently”. The “Sawah Landscape” painting is now proudly in display in his friend’s residence in New York!
Jang experimented with different way to artistically represent banana trees and distant forrest. Jang is very aware and is very good on how to utilise colours and shapes to depict rice fields in Indonesia, specifically in the island of Bali. The flowing layers of green and yellow shades of rice field creates an artistic expression and interaction between rice field and surrounding banana trees as described on “Sawah” painting below.
Best achievement in his life he humorously thinks, is one of his life’s great pleasures – to have executed the perfect shot in golf. Also commonly known in golfing parlance as “A hole in one”. It occurs when the golfer gets his golf ball into the cup on the green with just one stroke.
A hole-in-one is a rare feat the average amateur golfer will likely never achieve within the entire career. It is a major milestone for most golfers of achieving it at least once in their lifetime. To be able to put a ball in the hole on a par 3 from about 150 meters or so away with just one shot. That happened about two years ago, as his best achievement in life. He has a trophy for it and his name is proudly embossed on a relief plaque of his club wall-of-fame.
What is your opinion about the dichotomy of “Art versus Commerce”?
“The commercial world and paintings can co-exist side by side. Paintings, after all, are treasures and can be traded around commercially. The commercial world is the biggest supporter of arts. Just look at what Ciputra has done to the art world in Indonesia.
At the moment though, Jang does not feel though that he could justify painting under the burden of commerce. That is, to paint for money. Currently, his passion is simply to paint something for himself and other people to enjoy. Perhaps when the money is good enough then he would be able to focus full time on his art paintings, but not now.
How do you pick an idea and develop your vision for completing a painting?
“Painting has been my passion since childhood. The idea of a painting could have come from anywhere”. Jang’s painting were stimulated by the power influence from anything or anyone that grabbed his imagination and burned his passion.
Those would immediately be candidate for his next painting. “Then I would assess the likelihood of making a great painting by looking at various technical factors like light, color, angles, shapes and lines”. Below is painting of Cymbidium Orchids.
Beautiful scenery of nature landscapes such as rice fields, trees, rivers, oceans or self-potrait appeared in many of his paintings. They are part of his daily life’s spiritual surrounding.
Jang has a good pair of “artist’s eye”. Once he has colours and shapes in mind, he simply set up the canvas and away he goes. Sometime, but rarely, he would sketch first to study the composition but mostly he just painted straight onto canvas, Jang replied happily while laughing.
Family member in Art & Painting
In Australia, Jang fell in love then got married and started a family while completing his studies. Four years ago he moved back to Jakarta to take up a contract job in IT and he has been here in Jakarta ever since. None of his siblings are into painting or have skill in painting that he knows of.
Jang was the third child in a family of four. His father, mother and other two sisters are also living in Jakarta. His late brother died of sickness many years ago.
Does your daughter have the skill in painting?
“Oh yes, Alice (23 years old) was encouraged after seeing her dad spending his days painting the beauty that surrounds him. And she is now painting, but not too seriously”.
Other passion of Jang!
Jang is very passionate about his old Indonesian heritage. He talked seriously while closing the conversation (p2/29Nov15).
Visit more on Jang Jang Joe Paintings: jjjpaintings.blogspot.com/
Venue: Lorin Sentul Hotel, Sentul City, Indonesia