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FX Harsono was born in 1949, just as the independence of the Indonesian nation was being established. He studied painting and during the early part of his career worked as a graphic designer in Jakarta to support his family.

During 1970s he was a founding member of Gerakan Seni Rupa Baru (New Art Movement) and the Desember Hitam (Black December) movement. These were the first iterations of a vibrant contemporary art scene that embraced performance and installation as well as more traditional mediums, and encouraged strident political criticism at a time when expressing dissent became increasingly dangerous.

In the post-Reformasi era, after the fall of the Soeharto government, Harsono’s work has become more self-referential. He has engaged in a social research project, working directly with the Chinese-Indonesian community of his ancestry, documenting their stories on film. In 2010 the Singapore Art Museum held a major retrospective of his works from the 1970s to the present day. Harsono lives and works in Jakarta, travelling widely in Java for his research, and internationally.

(b. 1948 in Blitar, East Java)

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