Wayang (puppet) is the identity of Subandi Giyanto’s work. The 61-year-old paintings do not only have wayang characters but also combined with Javanese wise words. Ajining diri dumunung ing lathi (pure personality is reflected in words/actions), Becik ketitik ala ketara (good or bad deeds will eventually be visible), Aja luntur ing panggoda (don’t easily be tempted), Ojo nyedak kebo gupak (pick your friends or foes), Aja adigang adigung adiguna (do not solely rely on strength, power and intelligence) are some of Javanese wise words that characterize Subandi’s glass painting works.
In his glass painting, Subandi tends to us Gareng and Petruk characters from Punakawan. Gareng is symbolized as a person who is small, poor and weak, while Petruk is a tall, big, strong and rich. Like the painting “Ajining Diri Dumunung ing Lathi” which is being worked on, the figure of Petruk, dressed in an official style, is being spoken with loudspeakers.
“This painting is about people’s representatives (caleg) who sell their promises a lot, their work is incompetent, but they demand high salaries”, Subandi said while focusing on putting ink on the glass in his studio in Bangunjiwo, Bantul, Yogyakarta.
Subandi’s glass painting is a satire that reflects the current state of life in Indonesia. Indonesia’s socio-political situation becomes its reference to work. The political situation which is currently heating up is transformed into a visual form of wayang plays and combined with Javanese wise words.
“In addition to criticizing socio-political conditions in Indonesia, my painting is an effort to preserve wayang and Javanese wise words so that they are not lost in times,” explained the graduate of IKIP Yogyakarta Fine Arts.