The Altarpieces is Utarit’s critique of Western modernism. It is a satire of modernism and capitalism, and tells of its seduction of local customs and traditions. Consisting of a total of 12 works, these works are composed of multiple panels forming a diptych, triptych, or polyptych, following the tradition of classical religious paintings with elaborate frames and settings.
Utarit’s interest in Western religious painting stems from his appropriative approach to classical art. “In my paintings here I offer an interpretation of the world and various beliefs that appear in the Western world from my own Asian perspective,” he says.
Optimism Is Ridiculous: The Altarpieces is a travelling exhibition with National Gallery of Indonesia as its second stop. It was presented in Ayala Museum in Makati City, Philippines as its first stop in February 2017. After its run in Jakarta, the exhibition is scheduled to head on to Singapore.
Natee Utarit – Optimism is Ridiculous: The Altarpieces