There are so many artists in Bali, it’s often very easy to overlook someone’s work because of all the “clutter”.
Whilst not a well-known artist, Komang Rianta’s paintings offer something a little different and, given his lack of professional training, where he lives, and his very simple personal life, it’s truly remarkable that he can “speak” through paint in such an individualistic way. He’s created, in his very own style, a contemporary take on painting Bali’s beautiful dancers. They are a familiar subject matter (and an often tired theme) in Balinese art but Komang’s vision of their qualities is both bold & subtle at the same time.
His use of strong colours in just a few areas of the canvas (i.e. the background, the tops of the dancers’ costumes and below, their sarongs) is contrasted by the paleness of the girls’ bodies with the focus drawn to their faces and the expressive, faraway look in their eyes. And, the almost powdery application of paint for the faces contrasts strikingly with the thick brush strokes he uses elsewhere on the canvas.
For a man who lives alone – tending his land when not painting – in a city far removed from the “art centres” of Denpasar and Ubud, Komang has evolved his own style by which he pays homage to Bali’s dancers. He purposely depicts them in costumes worn in earlier times – their headdresses being circlets of gold ornaments and fresh flowers, their hair worn long and flowing, their chests bound with fabric and their shoulders bare. He’s a romantic of sorts, one would have to say. (To see more detail, click on the images.)
Certainly, Komang’s art is decorative but the man himself has a kind, sweet soul and he’s interpreting his particular vision of Balinese beauty in his own very special way. He’s thrilled for his work to have been “noticed” by someone and we hope that you too enjoy looking at (and can appreciate) the essence of what he is trying to convey through his art. Perhaps, one day in the near future, he will look up from painting his canvases (or digging in his garden) to find the woman of his dreams standing by waiting for him. He has painted her often enough and will surely know when she appears.
If you are interested in purchasing artwork from Komang Rianta, pls. email to email@example.com.