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Guilty Pleasures

Everyone has them, and what form they take varies from one individual to the next. What we’re referring to is, of course, Guilty Pleasures, and that’s the title chosen by Cracko Art Group (CAG) for their series of exhibitions, the first of which will be at Artemis Art, beginning May 16th, 2015.

CAG was formed in 2010 when a group of young artists got together for an art project. Recognized today as one of the very few enduring young art collectives in Malaysian Borneo, CAG has become a sort of protest against “mainstream” art practice the young artists observed in their locale. Or as they describe it, “kitsch and touristic art movements”.

The membership of the collective is fluid, but the spirit that CAG has exhibited over the years is certainly solid.

For Guilty Pleasures, three artists from CAG are participating, with their rendition of what each artist considers a ‘guilty pleasure‘. The three artists are Adam K., Anddy R. Dulait, and Vivi Kartina Hazolene. Of the three, Anddy is the only one who currently resides in Kota Kinabalu, where CAG is headquartered, while the other two reside in Kuala Lumpur.

Adam K., whose day job is in the film effects industry, is a very skilled artist, whose lifelike sculptures are terrifyingly enthralling. Adam has chosen the idea of human sexuality as his ‘guilty pleasure’.

In these sculpture pieces, I try to illustrate how similar we are to animals through our guilty pleasures; things we deem wrong through social proof. We are, in fact, ravenously violent and sexual wild beasts.

There is truth to this notion of humans as sexually driven beasts. And like many other ‘guilty pleasures‘ it is something that is rarely spoken about.

One human behavior that is manifest is many people is the feeling of self-loathing. Again, it’s there, but not often mentioned. This is the ‘guilty pleasure‘ that artist Anddy Romeo Dulait has chosen to focus on for this exhibition.

In the spirit of getting out of my comfort zone, as this exhibition intends, I am willing to make myself vulnerable and acknowledge my addiction of self-loathing and feelings of inadequacy.

The artworks Anddy has created for this exhibition are indeed deeply introspective, digging into the artist’s mind and soul, and dredging out the dark pleasures of self-deprecation.

On a lighter note are the works by Vivi Katrina Hazolene, one of Cracko Art Group’s founding members. For Vivi, her ‘guilty pleasure‘ is speaking her mind.

Saying it with flowers has never been better. This is my guilty pleasure, speaking my mind. Sometimes the truth may be ugly, but there is always beauty in everything.

Juxtaposing what’s really on her mind against floral splatter designs produces an interesting effect, of softening the harsh tones of what she has to say. Shocking it may be to some, but as Vivi succinctly put it, there’s beauty in everything.

Collectively, Guilty Pleasures may be a small exhibition, in comparison to the ones we’ve done previously. Small as it may be, we think the impact of the works more than makes up for the quantity.

The exhibition opens on Saturday, May 16th, 2015, with a small opening reception at 3pm. Guilty Pleasures continues until Sunday, June 7th, 2015.

Guilty Pleasures: a sneak preview of artworks

(Click on any thumbnail below to view details and larger image)

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