Speaker on documentary/art photography discussion

Budi Ostkreuz KKF

This Wednesday I will be taking part in a panel together with Karina Roosvita and Vivien Poly to talk about the development of photography from its documentary function to its more artistic uses and the influence of social media, and how the three influence each other. The discussion is held in conjunction with the screening of the film Foto: OSTKREUZ (Maik Reichert, documentary, 2015), about the German photo agency Ostkreuz, founded after the fall of Berlin Wall in 1990.

Term of reference for the discussion is as follows. Art or documentation: Can everybody become a photographer? Only little more than a decade ago, young Indonesian photographers started to develop photography as art form that now is also recognized by galleries and curators. Like once Ostkreuz they started taking pictures of daily life in streets or private homes that before would never have been considered worth to be shown to a public audience. Today everybody can experiment with photography on instagram and other social media. Where is the boundary between art and simply catching a moment? And what is the role of professional photographers in this new media world?

The film is in German with English subtitle; the discussion will be held in Bahasa Indonesia. The film screening and the following talk are held at Kedai Kebun Forum, open for public and free of charge. Come and join us if you are in town and have time. ∎


Alumni professional sharing at John de Britto High School Yogyakarta


Earlier today, I was invited to share my professional experience in photojournalism to the senior students of John de Britto High School, from which I graduated more than a decade ago. The purpose of this professional orientation is to give the students an idea of what it is like in real life to work in a certain field that they may find interesting to pursue as a field of study or even future career.

I shared my session with my senior who is now a photojournalist for Kompas, one of the top national daily newspapers here in Indonesia, P. Raditya Mahendra Yasa (Wendra). I knew Wendra since I was a sophomore and he was still studying Communications at Universitas Atma Jaya Yogyakarta, almost fifteen years ago. During the session, I shared some basic and general principles and knowledge in working in photojournalism, while Wendra emphasised that though we both work in the same field, our work natures are different: him being a national daily newspaper staff photographer while I am a freelance photographer working for magazines, both national and foreign.

Thank you, Pak Widi Nugroho, my English teacher who contacted and invited me. I hope what I and Wendra shared are useful for the students.


Photographs courtesy of P. Raditya Mahendra Yasa ∎

“Kisah Mata” book discussion and photography coaching clinic


The book “Kisah Mata” by Seno Gumira Ajidarma has recently been reissued with minor revision and addition. The publisher is holding a book discussion and photography coaching clinic to mark the occasion. The author will be present along with Kris Budiman and me. The book discusses about photography and meaning in philosophical discourse, and was originally written as a master’s thesis by the author, who is now the Rector of Jakarta Arts Institute (IKJ). Kris Budiman will comment on the discourse as an image reader, while I will add another perspective as an image maker. The event will take place on 9 March 2017 at Auditorium Institut Français Indonesie (IFI) Yogyakarta.

More info here.



UPDATE: A documentation photo of the event from Galang Press. ∎

Talk on photojournalism in practice


I am invited by my alma mater, Department of Communications, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences, Universitas Gadjah Mada to give a talk on the practice of photojournalism, as part of their annual student contests Ajisaka. The committee asked me to share my experiences as a working photojournalist to the finalists of the photo contest and to give comments to their works. The talk will be held this Friday, 4 November 2016 at 9.00. It is open for public and free of charge. ∎

Talk on “Sharing with Photography”


I am invited to join as a speaker in this talk show on “Sharing with Photography”, organized by Galang Press foundation in conjunction with a photo exhibition commemorating the 10th anniversary of Merapi volcano’s 2006 eruption and the 6th anniversary of its 2010 eruption. The exhibition features works by photojournalists Boy T. Harjanto (at that time covering for The Jakarta Globe newspaper), Wawan H. Prabowo (Kompas daily), and Slamet Riyadi (stringer for The Associated Press news agency).

The talk show is inspired by Boy T. Harjanto’s practice of giving back to the communities around the slopes of Merapi volcano affected by the eruption. Boy collected his work into a photo book titled Merapi 120 FPS and gave few hundred copies of it to the people of Merapi for free. Those people sold the books to tourists and used the money to rebuild their lives, as they had lost almost everything (houses, cattles, farms, even their lands) during the 2010 eruption. In the talk, Boy will explain more of this practice, what the idea was behind it and how he did it, while I will try to broaden the discussion by presenting similar practices throuhout the history of photography.

The talk show will be held this Sunday, 30 October 2016 at 15.00.
It is open for public and free of charge. ∎

Singapore visit

I am currently visiting Singapore for the 3rd Singapore International Photography Festival 2012, coming up on 5 October and will last until mid November. The exhibitions and talks are nicely concentrated around the gallery and museum area in Bras Basah. Each venues are close to each other. Quite convenient.

Excerpt from the festival agenda (note that this is NOT the full program):

5 Oct

– 18.00 Opening ceremony at National Library Building, The Plaza

6 Oct
– 11.00 Talk: Current transformations – topography & actuality by Andrea Botto at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall
– 13.30 Talk: Fluid world by Yee I-Lann at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall
– 15.30 Talk: Mediating realities by Wang Qingsong at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall
– 17.00 Talk: Contemporary photography in Indonesia by MES56 at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall

– 19.30 Evening presentations at National Museum of Singapore, Salon

7 Oct
– 11.00 Talk: British contemporary photography by Louise Clements at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall
– 14.00 Talking points: The limits of photography in digital age at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall
– 16.30 Talk: Photography in Philippines contemporary art by Isa Lorenzo at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall
– 18.00 Talk: Korean documentary photography by Seok Jae Hyun at Singapore Art Museum, Glass Hall

– 19.30 Evening presentations at National Museum of Singapore, Salon

8 Oct
– 11.00 Exhibition at Societe Generale Gallery, Alliance Française de Singapour
– 13.00 Exhibition at Photographic Society of Singapore, Selegie Arts House
– 15.00 Special showcase: The History of Monuments by Wang Qingsong

– 19.30 Evening presentations at National Museum of Singapore, Salon

9 Oct
– 10.00 Exhibition at The Plaza, National Library
– 11.00 Exhibition at The Substation Gallery
– 12.00 Exhibition at Singapore Management University Gallery, School of Social Science Building

– 12.00 Special showcase: Silvermine by Thomas Sauvin at Singapore Management University Concourse

10 Oct
– 10.00 Exhibition at Art Science Museum, Marina Bay Sands

– 10.00 Magnum Photos Showcase at Art Science Museum, Marina Bay Sands

Looking forward to the good exhibitions and interesting talks ahead this week. And in between those dates and times, I will also meet up with photographer friends here whom I knew from previous visits or workshops or festivals somewhere else. Hainanese chicken rice, anyone? Kaya toast maybe? Or laksa? ∎