Sunday, June 13, 2010

Papuan Artist Tony Mansiraken Krey

In Papua, there is Tony Mansiraken Krey - a respected and famous yet simple and humble artist who lives in Ketapang boat station of Manokwari city. His brilliance is reflected in thousands of artworks.  A few days ago, I had a chance of talking with Tony Mansiraken Krey, a senior and prolific artist from West Papua. He had just returned from Raja Ampat islands where he created pulpit and statues inside a GKI church and organized an Art and Cultural Festival which was a big event for the regency this year. Art groups from villages and districts around Raja Ampat came to participate in the event. It is expected to be an annual event which is regularly conducted from 1 to 9 May 2010. Raja Ampat islands have been famous for their scenery and underwater coral reef but the presence of Mr. Krey in the islands have brought Waisai (the capital of the regency) into another era where art and culture of the Papuan people are revitalized.
Mr. Krey visited my Xavier bookstore at 2 p.m. and we were able to discuss a lot of matters ranging from the promotion of artists in Manokwari to his works in research and development of Papuan contextual art inside church buildings. He has made various pulpits that look like sea shells or boats. He performed street art exhibition in West Biak which attracted the attention of youth and elders alike.
I am amazed to see hundreds of photographs that show his works and activities related to his struggle in developing art in Papua and in training young artists.
Although Mr. Krey lives in Manokwari, his artworks can be seen along the northern region of West Papua from Jayapura, to Biak and Numfor and from Manokwari to Sorong and Raja Ampat. I wish I could put all of the photographs of his artworks here but given to the volumes of the photographs, I think that they should be part of a series of blog posts about him.
After receiving copies of photographs of his artworks, I am considering of writing a number of blog posts about artist Tony Mansiraken Krey in series to show the world the beauty of Papuan art and culture as created by this great Papuan artist.
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