I'm staring at the water,

Kim Sontosoemarto with Ceramics and Batik

My name is Kim Sontosoemarto (1959). I am of Javanese descent and was born and raised in Suriname. I am an autodidact artist and nowadays I spend a large part of the year in my country of birth. Those who know this country are well aware of the fact that everyone growing up in ‘Switi Sranan’, does so amongst a great variety of cultures. It is therefore quite logical that my inspiration comes from the people and the environment of Suriname.

My ceramics have been clearly influenced by the Saramaca woman, the “Samaaka muje”, because of my countless stays in the Upper Suriname (Sipaliwini) area.

 

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I’m a visual artist and Suriname is my muse. I want to show her to the world through my eyes.

Ceramics

I initially started with ceramics under the tutelage of Soeki Irodokromo. I became very passionate about the craft, and asked my sister in law Dorothé van den Berg (Italy), to teach me the basics of raku firing, which was still rather unknown in Suriname at that time. After that I took various courses in clay turning and decoration techniques. I now make my own raku […]

Batik

In 2013 I was taught the art of Batik in Yogyakarta at Batik Nakula Sadewa of Bpk. Bambang Sumardyono. In addition to batik paintings, I also use the batik technique on the so-called ‘Man Bangi’, wooden maroon benches, some of which include woodcarvings and some that don’t. I also use the ‘canting’ and ‘malam’ (wax) on my ceramics to create patterns on my work. This […]

Paintings

My preference for Asian, African and Indigenous influences is rooted in my homeland. I work with acrylics on canvas and occasionally add various materials that I find in the woods, the water, or on the ground. Suriname and my environment are my greatest muses. An old dugout canoe, driftwood, an old chair… it doesn’t matter. Endlessly fantasizing about the second or third life of an […]

Other Projects

I learned the porcelain painting and scratch techniques from a well-known porcelain painter in the Netherlands: Tiny Debie (www.tinydebie.nl). I now use that technique to decorate tableware with ‘kotomisi’ images. In addition to applying images to tea pots, milk jugs and other items of crockery or china, I occasionally also add an ‘ODO’, a Surinamese proverb or saying. I use glazes that require firing at […]

I call myself: “Someone who wants make things and is happy when that makes others happy too.

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