Seni Collective For Borneo Hornbill Festival 2012


"Celebrate Individuality. Harvest Diversity"

SENI COLLECTIVE is a group of established and emerging artists founded by Ashly Nandong and Amelie Blanc in 2011. The SENI COLLECTIVE network of artists includes individuals from Australia, Brunei, France, Japan and Malaysia.

The main mission of the collective is to provide venues for the artists to promote their works and to promote an appreciation of art to the society where ever it may be exhibiting, as well as to promote cultural diversity of its artist.

This partnership with Warisan Sarawak during the Borneo Festival 2012 will present a unique opportunity for the public to view a very diverse array of artists and their artworks, exhibiting at the Malaysia Tourism Centre, Jalan Ampang Kuala Lumpur. And we believe this collaboration will enhance further the reputation of both Warisan Sarawak and

The Collective’s Artists:

Ali Akbar Othman  

Art genre:  Na├»ve Art Painter

Medium:   Acrylic on Canvas
Artist overview:

Born in July 1956 in Merlimau Melaka, AliAkbar always aspired to live a life of a full time artist. This led him into a period of exploration and after completing his secondary level of education he joined an Anti-Drug Campaign poster design in Dungun, Terengganu and was awarded first prize for best design. This lead him to undertake a Diploma in Art & Design (Graphic Design) ITM, Shah Alah from 1977 to 1979, during which period he has continually won mulitple graphic design awards such as main prize for the Majlis Agama Islam Wilayah Persekutuan logo design contest (1977), the runner-up for the HLR Insurance logo design contest (1979), first prize for the Kelab Dagang logo design competition (1981).

It was only in 2005, Ali Akbar was finally able to realise his life-long dream to be an established full-time artist, and embarked on a journey of this new career, participating in collective collaborations in multiple exhibitions all over Malaysia until today.  However, it was only in 2008 that Ali Akbar artistic niche of the ‘dot mix naive’ style paintings were given recognition and he was acknowledged as the pioneer in Malaysian arts in such genre of contemporary arts at his solo exhibition entitled Lanskap Malaya in New Straits Time Post Building, Kuala Lumpur (2008). 

Ali Akbar is a resident artist of the Conlay Artist Colony and rents a studio at the National Craft Complex in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia since 2008 to current.
 Some of Ali's work.

Ashly Nandong

Art genre:  Contemporary Ethnic Motifs
Medium:   Acrylic and ink on canvas, mix media, murals and skateboards

Artist overview:

Ashly Nandong is an emerging Malaysian artist, who studies the Borneo traditional ’Sapeh’ lute music, and the traditional Dayak dance of the Orang Ulu people group of Sarawak) and is a contemporary painter artist. His original background of studies was a Bachelor’s of Mechatronics and Robotics Engineering from Swinburne University, Victoria, Australia. He continually pursues his dream to be an established artist and passionately endeavours in his artistic interest as a freelance artist.

Projects in the arts that Ashly have successfully accomplished are such as world music fusion with the Melodius Operandi ensemble which he founded in 2007 (a multicultural world music ensemble based in Melbourne VIC Australia; 2007 - 2010), informally-studied and performed traditional compositions of the Borneo ‘Sapeh’ lute music under the tutelage of Mr Ukung Mering (1999 – 2005: Kuching, Sarawak, Malaysia) and Mr Philip Ngau Jalong (2010: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia), has also attended practices and informally studied West Javanese “Chirebon” Gamelan music with Putra Panji Asmara ensemble under ensemble director Micheal Ewing (2010: Melbourne, Victoria, Australia) as well as self-organised and curated visual art exhibitions (Pas De Compromis – A reflection of the soul) collective art exhibition in Melbourne, VIC Australia; 2007 and Saturn ReturnA premier solo art exhibition by Ashly Nandong in Kuching, Sarawak; 2011 ) and have participated in numerous visual art exhibitions in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah as part of the Cracko Art Group; 2011. He is also the co-founder and joint-coordinator alongside David Sweeting and Anna Chinnary of a Not-For-Profit advocacy through visual arts group based in Melbourne called Tumbuna Art Project; 2009 - 2010, which launched its premier visual arts exhibition entitled “Time Mi Lukim” in March 2010, showcasing works of art by native artists from Papua New Guinea in Melbourne, VIC, Australia.

Ashly is currently working with Amelie Blanc in their latest collective art exhibition tour SENI COLLECTIVE (Celebrate Individuality, Harvest Diversity)”, which will showcase a variety of artists, locally and internationally, from a diverse range of visual arts genre in Kuala Lumpur and Penang for its 2012 programme.

                           Some of Ashly's work

Cracko @ Crig Roynno Francis

Art genre:
Intuitive doodling, street art, abstract, and contemporary, pop art
Oil on Canvas, acrylic on canvas and walls, mix media, carbon and charcoal, etc etc.

Artist overview:

Cracko, graduated in Graphic Design from the Kinabalu Commercial College and is now striving to make it in the Sabah scene as a full time painter artist and freelance graphic designer. In 2001, he published a magazine about the arts and distributed it to the local underground youth movements in hope that it will nurture a sense of progress within the local arts scene. Only after 10 years of such sporadic attempts, Cracko Art Group was formed.
Cracko is the leading founder of Cracko Art Group, an art movement based in KK, Sabah. He found his inspiration from an encounter with renowned Malaysian contemporary artist Donald Abraham a.k.a Yak Yak in 2008. Straight after, in the same year, Cracko joint ventured with Anddy Romeo Dulait  forming  ARTPreciate.. an arts movement with a purpose strictly on doing charity and educating the local on different style/genre/topic in the arts. In 2010, ten local emerging Sabah artists join a collaboration project and he found out that most of these artists have their own copies of Crackozine issue from his 2001 endeavour. Hence they decided to form Cracko Art Group.
 Currently, Cracko Art Group has 19 member artists, is a well-established artist collective in KK, Sabah and is still growing in numbers.

Some of Cracko's work

Jon Bagul (Abdul Latif Magit)

Art genre:  Floral and Motif Batik Fine Arts 

Medium:   Fabric Dye, Tjanting on Silk and Cotton

Artist overview:

Born to the tribe of the ‘Bajau’ Horseman from Kota Belud, Sabah, Malaysian Borneo, Jon Bagul has always been a naturally talented and aspiring artist. He kick-started his artist journey by producing T-shirt prints while still in high school back in Kota Belud and was renowned for his creativity. However, Jon started his career path working in the banking industry before progressing into his desired profession as a batik fine artist. Jon only took this leap of faith to be an artist when the Sabah government drove to re-educate Malaysians on native craft, especially in a time when batik was becoming a dying art in the early 1990s.

Jon learnt the beginnings of his craft of batik tjanting at Yayasan Sabah in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah (1995) under a trainer who was sent by the Handicraft Development Cooperation. Later he pursued a year of business in Kota Belud, creating paintings and decorative work while horning his batik skills; circa 1995-1996, when he founded the JonBagul Studio.  Soon after, he felt the need to advance further his natural talent and entered a three year course with the National Crafts Institute, hence left Sabah for Kuala Lumpur from 1997 to 1999. He graduated with a Malaysian Vocational Training Council Certificate and immediately found a job in Kuala Lumpur with a Korean based batik making company in 2000.

Eventually, Jon left the company in 2002 and ventured as a sole business trader selling his very own creations of batik fine arts, operating under the name “Embokoyoh Batik”, in honour of his great grandfather.  Since the establishment of his own business, Jon rents a studio at the National Craft Complex in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia until the present day and works on commission for clients locally and overseas mostly. 

Some of Jon's work.

Steven Lejeune

Art genre:
Japanese Manga, French-Belgium and American Comic novel writing

Medium: Ink on paper, mural, wood and computer illustration

Artist overview:

Steven Lejeune is a French Polynesian graphic novel artist currently leaving in Kuching, Sarawak. Aside from his 10 years experience in the comics industry, he used the fact that drawing can be done anywhere so he could travel around and gets to live and learn other cultures and mindsets.
Steven Lejeune has worked with other French comic book writers, such as Jean-David Morvan. He is most well-known for his work on the comic book series TDB, or Trop de Bonheur (which loosely translates to "Too Much Happiness"). The series, which takes place in a future France, was first started in 2002 and is published by Delcourt Publishing. Before this, he has collaborated in the production of earlier Heroes comic books as a graphic novel illustrator.
This exhibition project turns out to be his first chance to come up with the production of decorative pieces of art (as opposed to his usual comic pages where only the reproduction rights are sold).

Some of Steven's work

Yuma Hyodo

Art genre: Tradition Japanese Motifs and Traditional Amerindians Motifs

Medium:  Embossment, Burn-treatment and Acrylic on Skateboards

Artist overview:

Yuma Hyodo was born on the 2nd of September, 1982 in a small village near Ehime, Shikoku Island, Japan. He spent his entire childhood there, surrounded by nature, before moving to Tokyo in 2000.
At the age of 7, his brother introduced him to skateboarding, a passion that Yuma would never let go of. He travels constantly with his board, ready to ride and discover.  And it was with that attitude, and his love for skateboarding, that he journeyed to the U.S.A. in 2002, cruising with his skateboard through the street cultures of New York and then onto San Francisco. Once back in Japan, he began thinking about how to use the skateboard as an E Medium for Art.

As the skateboard/wood board had never been used as a canvas, Yuma imagined what technical skills and designs could be used, and eventually started carving, burning and painting, and colouring skateboards in 2004. But it was only in 2007,  three years later,  that he began to showcase his art to others, holding exhibitions and opening his own shop and brand, Medicine Wheel Movement, in various venues.

Yuma’s art and lifestyle is strongly connected and influenced by Amerindian Shamanism and more specifically, the Medicine Wheel. In Native American spirituality, the Medicine Wheel represents 'harmony' and 'connections', and is considered a major symbol of peaceful interactions among all living beings on Earth. “Sun, Moon, Stars, Ocean, Earth, Plants, Animals, You and Me are spiritually and physically connected, anytime and anywhere”, says Yuma. “Everything is Oneness.”According to him, this phenomenon is present in each action throughout the day, from feeding, to walking in a forest, or skating on the paved streets of Tokyo. In his art, he expresses Nature, The Universe and Mind, through traditional Japanese patterns, geometrical patterns and also Mandalas. And while constantly questioning himself, Yuma wishes to question the minds of others, about what, in a subdividing and rationalizing society, is of primary importance to human beings. 

 Some of Yuma's work