JITET KUSTANA - Indonesia
Jitet Kustana’s work was chosen as the first place winner based on the unity between the form, meaning and message conveyed. Mankind’s greed for modernity and urbanization has caused the destruction of many historical places and monuments to give way to the building of modern and sophisticated skyscrapers. The element of greed is compared to a bulldozer, a sort of monster which destroys our architectural heritage, with modern high-rise buildings in the background. Jitet makes clever use of symbolism, allegories and the element of contrast in order to remind people of the importance of preserving our heritage, in addition to criticising their greediness.
LIANG WEICHI - China
There is no denying that the relationship between heritage and tourism is an important source of income for the economy of many countries. Liang Weichi’s work, which was chosen as the second place winner, is quite unique in depicting this issue. By using a strong element of contrast, the artist uses the classical column as a symbol of heritage which is sacrificed in order to generate income for the country’s economy. In this context, the hidden meaning focuses on preservation and conservation of the cultural heritage as a historical item and a reference for future generations, not as a short-term source of profit.
MAKHMUDJON ESHONKULOV - Uzbekistan
Makhmud Eshonqulov, who was awarded the third place, also uses the approach of contrast and the comparison between tradition and modernity. Like Jitet, Makhmud expresses his displeasure with the destruction of heritage buildings which are replaced with modern buildings. Interestingly, he shows how architecture which is rich in aesthetic values and refined decoration is destroyed to make way for modern architecture which is soulless and ugly, represented by schematic boxes. These three artists criticize people who are not aware of their cultural heritage and only give priority to profit.
Prof. Dr. Muliyadi Mahamod
PhD in Cartoon Studies,
University of Kent, England