Swedish and Indonesian art meets at exhibition in Singapore


Two women, a Swede and an Indonesian who met on Bali opened a joint exhibition called ‘Soul Sister’ on Friday the 3rd October. Both artists have their own distinct style, but they have portraits of women in common.

The wife of the Swedish ambassador to Singapore held a speech and a TV-crew was on the spot at the opening of the Swedish-Indonesian art exhibition at Volvo Artloft in Singapore. The Swedish painter Ingela Johansson met Ni Nyoman Sani on a trip to Bali with some of her painting students.

After seeing the works of Sani, Ingela knew that she had to invite her to Singapore to exhibit her paintings. The paintings bythe two women are very different from one another.

Ingelas paintings are layer upon layer of collage like elements, photographs that are painted on and often with bits of texts and the red color and chaotic cityscapes as a subtle theme.

Sani’s paintings on the other hand have a simple expression. Seen from a distance the women in her paintings looks a bit like fashion sketches, but once you get closer you realize that the women seem to have a more complex emotional life under their seemingly perfect skin and slim silhouette. The appearance of the women seems to balance between strong and fragile. Her color palette is very not as intense as Ingelas and shades of white and brown seems to be her  main colors.

Her art changed when she moved to Singapore

In the two years Ingela has lived Singapore she has experienced her art changing; first the colors became stronger and more vivid then she started to explore the contrasts of the old and new world represented in Singapore before she also found her art influenced by the diverse culture.

For Ingela it seems quite obvious that her art has changed after she moved, since she is painting the world around her.

“Art has always been working with our daily life, and my pictures are basically following this tradition by portraying the daily life in Singapore,” Ingela says.

Catharina Jevrell, the wife of the Swedish ambassador was happy to speak at the opening of this multicultural exhibition. She thinks that art will always have an impact on any community.

“As this exhibition is actually yearning symbols and about the heart and soul in art, I think all of us should reflect on it. It is very interesting to see the similarities coming from persons with totally different backgrounds,” she says.

You can see the Soul Sister exhibition between 8:30 and 19:00 at the Volvo Artloft, 249 Alexandra Rd., Singapore until the 30th of October.

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