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Cetak Urban
dimension vary, in a room of 778 x 798 cm
TV Monitor, DVD player, furniture, digital print.


ruangrupa, founded in 2000 by the initiatives of a group of Jakartan artists, is a not-for-profit organization active in holding efforts to develop art ideas. The group is a part of the RAIN Artists' Initiative International Network, a network of artists' initiatives and art institutions in numerous countries. ruangrupa holds a myriad of programs, such as the artist-in-residence program, art workshops, research and documentation, discussions, screening of video art, short films, experimental works, music video, and works of digital manipulations. ruangrupa also provides an exhibition room, a living space, working space, and computer facilities for digital image developing, and sound and video editing. The community also has Karbon, an art journal published every four months. Some of the activities held by the group include:"JAKARTA 32°C," an exhibition, workshop, discussion, work presentation, and film screening at the National Gallery, Jakarta (2004); "Trotoart" (Jakarta – Indonesia) and Nilsmagnus Skold (Malmo, Sweden) (2004); "Secrets/No Secrets" exhibition (2003); "OK Video," Video Art Exhibition at the National Gallery, Jakarta (2003); and an artist-in-residence and collaborative program "Short Message System" with Tina Gillen from Belgia/Luksemburg (2002).
The main mistake in viewing urban print is to consider it as a post-modernism cultural product. Urban prints, like street stickers, cheap posters, pun posters, pirated stuffs, are done very modernly although not properly.Viewed from its origin, urban print was born in the same time as when the city and industrialization were born, which will further define the layers and economic classes in the society. From the producer's point of view, urban print was created by a group of people in those economy classes for the sake of profit and living. From the consumer's point of view, it was directed to a group of people inside those economy classes who can get their self-identification through the printed goods. From the industry's point of view, urban print was created through modern print techniques, although most of them were made with a reckless attitude and accuracy.
The only image that can survive beyond every market interest and any age demand is an image of hope. Urban print can never free itself from this theme; as a "hope-realism genre," its idioms can change according to mass reality, but it could never be moved aside from communal hopes or communal memories, reconstructed from fathers-to-the sons, planted in the mass mind. That is the only way for the print to be bought. Urban print is a form of realism that never talks about the present-realism.

(From "Sebelas Tesis tentang Cetak Urban" by Ronny Agustinus, in Karbon-Jurnal Seni Rupa: Cetak Urban, Yang Personal di Atas Tafsiran Sosiologis vol: 2 02/2001)

Urban environment and its problems always become a main focus in every artwork of ruangrupa. One of the problems that we've tackled and constantly analyzed is the visual culture phenomena, especially the urban print culture.

The print product in urban society has become a part of everyday reality. It can be seen as a representation of the people's identity; part of the production system that becomes a "sub" of the mainstream; forming the sub-culture, and has become the alternative media, in stickers, posters, leaflets, books, comics, and t-shirt.

ruangrupa presents a documentation and work in video, digital prints, and other print materials, from projects since 2000 – 2005, with the main focus on urban print culture. Most of this material will be re-worked and developed as a presentation form. This projects involves several artists, producer, and researcher, who analyze, ask, "play," or re-construct the phenomena of the urban print as a medium of idea presentation, with its many social-cultural relations. (Artist's Statement)

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