Helen Marshall first met Risang Yuwono in Tana Toraja, Sulawesi, Indonesia where both had travelled to take photographs relating to the region’s funeral rites and rituals. Risang invited Helen to visit the Ketoprak Tobong Kelana Bakti Budaya in Yogyakarta. The plan for the project was conceived, and later she returned to Yogyakarta to work with Risang and the theatre troupe to create an exhibitions and events programme, website and publication.
They went on to exhibit their work ‘Ritus’ at Jakarta Institute of Art in Java to mark the beginning of the collaboration. The project on Ketoprak developed into a three year collaboration which culminated in two consecutive artist residencies, in Yogyakarta and in London, and a series of constructed photographic artworks, extensive archive material and project website.
” This collaboration introduced me to the global art experience. Getting more exposure as an Artist in an international environment is a big step to developing a dream in the reality of my visual art and photography process. The world of Britain of London in two months is a chance to be reformed from any understanding that I had before. During my residency, there are several meeting that give me knowledge and good network for art, South East Asia and with British it self. Helen, Gasworks, and another patrons have work with extreme passion to run the circle of art at London it self, magnificently and precious. Now I just prepared my residency output, now I trying to create kind of small book of my work during my residency. I am happy to find any opportunity to follow up this experience into any presentation or sharing discussion.”Risang Yuwono
“I believe that it is this relationship, and what is between us, that ultimately shapes the intrinsic identity of the work, and rather than this overshadowing the social and cultural issues we wish to reveal how it represents a fresh critical perspective. We share the belief that photography and film have a particular ability to be able to convey and document the intangible and bring it to wider audiences. It was actually both the sense of ‘otherness and togetherness’ that sustained and extended the contact and return visits to Indonesia and UK.”Helen Marshall