‘The Imbroglio Tropical Paradise’ provides background glimpses of an exoticised landscape, echoed in a romanticised floating image of a white tiger and peacock, motifs lifted directly from a taxidermy display at the popular Museum Satwa in East Java. Precariously hanging in the midst of this inserted scene is a sleeping figure from Indonesian artist Dede Eri Supria’s painting ‘The Labyrinth’ (1987-88) which was exhibited in ‘The 1st Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art’ (APT1) in 1993. This is surrounded by a mass of figures depicting the rally of the 212 Movement that occurred on the 2 December 2016 in Jakarta’s central park where thousands of Islamic protestors marched against Jakarta’s Christian Chinese governor Basuki Tjahaja Purnama for alleged blasphemy against Islam. Suggestively juxtaposed behind the group, Zico Albaiquni has painted the hanging sculptures of Indonesian-Australian artist Dadang Christanto’s APT1 QAGOMA collection installation: ‘For those: Who are poor, Who are suffer(ing), Who are oppressed, Who are voiceless, Who are powerless, Who are burdened, Who are victims of violence, Who are victims of a dupe, Who are victims of injustice’ 1993.

Zico Albaiquni’s paintings include a wide range of references and juxtapositions, examining Indonesian painting traditions and broader art histories, with a particular interest in how the Indonesian landscape has been treated and commodified throughout history. Underpinning these investigations is the Indonesian concept of ‘lukisan’ (roughly translating as ‘painting’) and its ethnic ties to ritual, exchange and the creation of sacred objects.

Albaiquni’s distinct palette arises from pigment combinations drawn from the colonial painting genre of Mooi Indie (‘beautiful Indies’), while different picture planes and points of perspective intersect, and combinations of irregular-shaped canvases create multilayered compositions. He borrows imagery from disparate sources: from the acclaimed nineteenth century Indonesian painter Raden Saleh, to museum dioramas, tourist art, signature works by contemporary Indonesian artists and installation views from international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennale and ‘The 1st Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art’ (APT1). The results blend elements of art history, religious figures and gallery settings, as well as incorporating the public art viewer and the private space of the artists’ studio into the image in order to probe the relationships between artist, artwork, the viewer and art history.

Exhibited in 'The 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art' (APT9) | 24 Nov 2018 – 28 Apr 2019


  • Title: The Imbroglio Tropical Paradise
  • Creator: Zico Albaiquni b.1987
  • Date Created: 2018
  • Location Created: Indonesia
  • Physical Dimensions: 120 x 80cm
  • Provenance: Purchased 2018. Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art Foundation
  • Subject Keywords: APT9, The 9th Asia Pacific Triennial of Contemporary Art
  • Type: Painting
  • Publisher: Queensland Art Gallery | Gallery of Modern Art
  • Rights: © Zico Albaiquni
  • External Link: The Triennial and the painter, An open platform for artists to flourish
  • Medium: Oil, synthetic polymer paint and giclée on canvas
  • Art Form: Painting

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