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Titarubi (born 1968 in Bandung) graduated in 1997 from the Art and Design Faculty, Bandung Institute of Technology, majoring in ceramics. She has participated in many exhibitions, such as: “TransIndonesia: Scoping Culture in Contemporary Indonesian Art” at the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, New Zealand (2005); “Seed” (solo) at the Via-via Café, Yogyakarta (2004); “Bayang-bayang Maha Kecil” (solo) in Yogyakarta, Malang, Jakarta (2003 – 2004); and “Modernization and Urbanization,” Maronnier Art Center, Seoul, Korea (2003).
The cosmopolitan and global developments of urbanity nowadays wish to keep on proving about freedom and gender equity. Daily lives in the big cities all over the world open the horizon of opportunity and chances for everybody to progress, regardless of the gender. Unavoidably, capitalism makes use of the gender-body as the location for liberal identity industry. In his research notes, Three Essays on Theory of Sexuality (1905), Sigmund Freud was aware that “…in human being pure masculinity of femininity is not to be found either in a psychological or biological sense. Every individual on the contrary displays a mixture of the character traits belonging to his own and so to the opposite sex.” Certainly Freud did not imagine how at the end of the 20th century, gender matters became one important political agenda vigorously contested in the realm of political representation, vis-à-vis the power of capitalism playing under the hood of liberalism. Questioning about the political domination on the gender existence, the critic-cum-curator Kate Linker (1984) concluded that, “pure masculinity of femininity can only be conventionally assigned, as meanings determined by the social order.” Within such system of thought, Elizabeth Grosz's articulation becomes even more important. Grosz (1992) explained that, “The body is organically/biologically/ naturally 'incomplete'; it is indeterminate, amorphous, a series of uncoordinated potentialities which require social triggering, ordering, and long term 'administration'.”
Bodyscape reinterprets the democratization situation of gender politics in the strategy of regression, displaying the borderline situation between the manifestations of the femininity and masculinity aspects. The work is reinstating the problematic of gender identity in the Third World capitalism industry. We know that the development of industry and capitalism in many developing countries are still moved more by the sheath of the patriarchal culture's essence. In many cases, the practice of “women's emancipation” politics, as it is often formally called in Indonesia, is often merely a part of the political machine for the state's representation and capital interest. The work is one manifestation for the respect toward the many endeavors trying actually to unveil the problematic of gender differences, cutting through the many layers of the hegemonic patriarchal ideologies. An important question is perhaps being posed there: are we capable of overcoming the blurring of the gender identity on behalf of the success of life's modernization and industrialization project? (Rizki A Zaelani)
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