From: said juhari <>‬

Date: Tue, Jun 22, 2010 at 12:53 PM

Subject: Funasaka and Murakami Exhibition

To: Shigeharu Kawakami <>

Dear Mr. Kawakami,

Yesterday I spent the whole afternoon till midnight with Mr. Funasaka. I was deeply touched by his kind gesture during the party for the opening of the exhibition. It is the same with you, you have also treated me well when I was in Fukuoka last week. It is very true that art is a borderless world where it binds people together.

On the way home, he asked me for my opinion on his two-man show in Fukuoka. My comments were firstly, the museum should have extended their appreciation and congratulate you as a senior citizen of 80 years for your passion and effort in organizing exhibitions. Of course, one week for an exhibition is a very short time and this is due to the museum’s commitment with their schedules. Secondly, the museum should have assisted you and organized lectures on the two artists’ works. A scholar or artist talks can be arranged or organized by them.

Thirdly, a printmaking workshop can also be included with the talks for the public to be involved and participate.

For an institutional exhibition as this, an art museum and cultural center should consider these 4 points:

  1. Excellent art works for display
  2. Educational and outreach programs for the public
  3. Documentation of the work process
  4. Marketing strategies

It is important for private galleries to display good works and have a good marketing and promotion of the exhibition.

As for Murakami, his works have shown what the Japanese gender is all about! The display of works reflects his masculinity and the shapes and colors the femininity. Maybe the Sharaku woodblock portrait can reflect my thoughts about gender of an artwork. As for Funasaka’s drawings, I have some interesting opinion to share with you. All artists make drawings, because artist drawings are referred to as writing a diary about their works in progress they are seldom displayed during exhibitions. Most artist drawings are entirely about how the artist understands and comfortable with his medium. For Funasaka his medium is printmaking. For most printmaker they treat paper as a part of the body of the artworks. Papers and technique is like body and soul for printmakers!

For the ordinary eyes of layman, Funasaka’s drawing is like children’s scribbles.

Not many people can understand that the body of works is all about the overlapping of lines, textures and colors. In printmaking, overlapping are directly used by blocks but in this case Funasaka has used drawn paper on top one another. The aesthetic of ordinary drawing is about understanding and recording spontaneous skill. In Funasaka’s work, I would like to call it as printmakers drawing. This is about understanding the element in printmaking and magnified them into a domain of artworks.

In my work, block is one of the elements in printmaking. I managed to magnify the block by displaying them in an open space. A friend of mine, A. D. Pirous from Bandung has referred my works as a graphic sculpture.

Sad to say, this is what scholars fail to understand about printmaking and curators prefer media friendly meet the demand and submission for the media, most artworks have sensation, sex, provocative or insult images.  I could see this sometime ago during the establishment of the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum.

A mother does not have to display motherhood by holding her breast in nude like the sculpture at the entrance of the museum. She displays motherhood as who we are today.

Good citizens who are dedicated with their interests and full of passion and sacrifice their time and money are represented by the three of you, Kawakami, Funasaka and Murakami!

I salute you all!