Para Sekutu yang Tidak Bisa Berkata Tidak, Galeri Nasional Indonesia, Jakarta

Around the time of the Asia-Africa Conference (Bandung, 1955), geopolitically-oriented exhibitions started brewing all over the world. Among these were the Sao Paulo Biennale (f.1951), Alexandria Biennale (f.1955), and Biennial of Graphic Arts (Ljubljana, f.1955). A decade later ASEAN was founded. By 1981, traveling exhibitions between ASEAN member countries began taking place. At this time there was also a surge of non-Western-leaning international exhibitions, such as the Fukuoka Asian Art Triennale (f.1979), Asian Art Biennale (Bangladesh, f.1981), Australia and the Regions Exchange (f.1983), and Havana Biennale (f.1984). 

The scope of the Non-Aligned Movement (f.1961) was perhaps too big for such an effort, or one can assume that the Sao Paulo Biennale had accommodated this “region”, considering that their early approach to finding artists and shipping artworks was done as a G-to-G cooperation. What can we learn from these exchanges? Were they merely symbolic gestures of alliances? What was the relationship among the artists? Were there actual exchanges among artists? The exhibition is curated by Grace Samboh, with Anna-Catharina Gebbers, Gridthiya Gaweewong and June Yap.