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Indonesian photographer Abednego Trianto draws a mutual relationship between the photography industry and the colonial agroindustry in Java at the turn of the 20th century. His JAVA PHOTO STUDIOS visualises the geographical interconnection between commercial photo studios and sugar factories on the island and describes the socio-economic base of the colonial photographic industry. This linkage reveals the collaboration between commercial photographers and their clientele in formulating the portrait tradition in the colony, offering a subtle depiction of colonial exploitation and power relations. From this same photographic culture, Trianto continues his investigation into the typology of the Javanese aristocrat’s family portrait. In WHAT AM I GOING TO BE WHEN I GROW UP? RADEN AYU OF COURSE, he unpacks how the local portrait tradition maintained and formalised the gender inequality among local elites.
Abednego Trianto (Indonesia, 1988) holds a BFA (Honours) in Photography and Digital Imaging from the Nanyang Technological University in Singapore (2010) and is pursuing architectural studies in Indonesia. He explores narratives of Indonesian history in relation to photographic archives. He has exhibited in the Noorderlicht Photo Festival (Netherlands), Singapore International Photography Festival, Galeri Nasional Indonesia, International Orange Photography Festival (China), 2902 Gallery, The Center for Fine Art Photography (USA) and Bangkok University Gallery among other festivals and venues.