Mini feature father and daughter artist duo Soeki Irodikromo and Sri Irodikromo
Opening in the Readytex Art Gallery on June 21st, is a fascinating mini feature of the father and daughter team of Soeki and Sri Irodikromo. Exuberant colors, graceful details incorporated in impulsive compositions and an obvious affinity for the cultural wealth of Suriname, are common elements in the work of Soeki en Sri. But with regards to style and technique, the work of each artist is distinctly unique.
The main artistic driving force of Soeki Irodikromo, in his paintings, ceramics as well as his previous batik work, is without a doubt the spectacular cultural and ethnic diversity present in Suriname. His work is colorful, exuberant and infused with rhythm and movement. Dance and other typical cultural manifestations, complete with corresponding symbolisms, attributes and objects are unequivocally the core of the majority of his creations. But his own Javanese background is still of great influence, recognizable especially in his style and his compositions. Graceful details, objects and elements from traditional Javanese culture are intrinsic to his artistic identity.
This cultural fusion is what the artist strongly advocates. Through his art he relays his pride to be Surinamese, citizen of such a beautiful tropical country inhabited with a fascinating mix of different ethnical groups, but also his pride of being Javanese, a boy from the district, raised on the kampong with valuable cultural baggage, values and traditions. This is the message that Soeki wants to present to the Surinamese community through his art; a positive sense of self, of pride in ones identity and strong sense of nationalism.
The hand of an experienced artist, confident and skilled, is recognizable in every piece created by Soeki Irodikromo. In the colorful, often abstract compositions, composed mostly with a pallet knife, a multitude of Surinamese elements are cleverly incorporated. His work clearly attests his ‘joie de vivre’ and intense love for the colorful and multifaceted Surinamese culture.
The art of Sri Irodikromo has a slightly softer, but no less powerful appearance to it. Just as with her father’s work though, every creation of Sri also has a strong eye catching quality because of the striking use of color. Initially the passionate red, orange and yellow hues as well as the bright blues command the attention, but ultimately the viewer becomes fascinated by the theme, the spectacular attention for detail and the clever compositions created by this versatile young artist. Surinamese women from several cultural and ethnic backgrounds are for some time now the main theme of the work by Sri. The women are portrayed in traditional clothing and are surrounded by signs and symbols traditional to their cultures. The role of the woman as mother receives extra attention in this mini feature. Typical Surinamese scenes of mothers carrying their babies on their hips or tied to their backs in a cloth, are a familiar and charming sight in real life, but equally so on the canvasses of Sri Irodikromo.
The style of Sri Irodikromo has a marked quality to it. Clear and lifelike features in soft contours, impulsive and whimsical paint applications, ripped canvases, subtle as well as obvious symbolisms and meticulous detailing, make for surprising compositions. Once again the combination of different materials and techniques the artist is well known for, gives rich and interesting texture to the work. Pieces of pangi material and of batiked textiles, geometric embroidery patterns and stenciled motifs are familiar elements in the art of Sri, but the beads and structure paste are new additions to the materials used in this collection. The collection also shows a number of pieces where not women, but the cultural symbols form the main theme.
This special mini feature of work by Soekidjan and Sri Irodikromo is on display at the Readytex Art Gallery at the Maagdenstraat, from the 21st of June until the 5th of July 2010, during the regular opening hours of the Readytex department store.