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A History of Photography in Indonesia

From the Colonial Era to the Digital Age

496 pages
Amsterdam University Press
As a former colonized nation, Indonesia has a unique place in the history of photography. A History of Photography in Indonesia: From the Colonial Era to the Digital Age looks at the development of photography from the beginning and traces its uses in Indonesia from its invention to the present day. The Dutch colonial government first brought the medium to the East Indies in the 1840s and immediately recognized its potential in serving the colonial apparatus. As the country grew and changed, so too did the medium. Photography was not only an essential tool of colonialism, but it also became part of the movement for independence, a voice for reformasi, an agent for advocating democracy, and is now available to anyone with a phone. This book gathers essays by leading artists, scholars, and curators from around the world who have worked with photography in Indonesia and have traced the evolution of the medium from its inception to the present day, addressing the impact of photography on colonialism, independence, and democratization.
Author Bio
Brian C. Arnold received an undergraduate degree in English and Ethnomusicology from the Colorado College in 1993, and an MFA in photography from the Massachusetts College of Art in 1998. He has taught and lectured on photography at a number of institutions around the world, including the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University, the Beijing Film Academy, the University of Indonesia, Pasundan University, the Institute of Technology in Bandung, Santa Reparata International School of Art, the Academy of Arts in Novi Sad, and the National Gallery of Australia. Brian has exhibited his work internationally, and his photographs are included as part of the permanent collections at the Museum of Contemporary Photography in Chicago, the Denver Art Museum, the National Gallery of Art in Australia, the Eastman Museum of Photography, the Cleveland Museum of Art, and Light Work. He is author of the books Alternative Photographic Processes: Technique, History, and Creative Practice (2017) and Identity Crisis: Reflections on Public and Private Life in Contemporary Javanese Photography (2017). Brian has also self-published a number of small edition artist books and zines. He is currently doing Indonesian language work for the Cornell University library.