Haris PURNOMO<br/>
<em>Orang Hilang</em> 2012 <!-- (recto) --><br />

synthetic polymer paint and oil on canvas<br />
180.4 x 250.2 cm<br />
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne<br />
Yvonne Pettengell Bequest, 2013<br />
2013.783<br />
© Haris Purnomo

Haris Purnomo Orang Hilang 2013

Orang Hilang 2012

Orang Hilang presents a portrait of an ageing man, his face adorned with adhesive bandages bearing the names of missing Indonesian pro-democracy political activists. In the lead-up to a political crisis that led to the resignation of Indonesian President Suharto on 22 May 1998, hundreds of activists were arrested. According to Amnesty International, at least eighteen individuals went missing after they were subjected to kidnap-style arrests by Indonesian Special Forces and a number remain ‘disappeared’. The Indonesian word hilang in the artwork’s title means ‘lost’, ‘disappear’ or ‘vanish’ in English, and the work is a powerful statement of remembrance.