Neka Art Museum, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
We recently spent an afternoon viewing the art and lovely buildings and grounds at the Neka Art Museum.
Both of us agreed that it has been a long time since we felt so engaged with so many works of art as we did here. The local artists, traditional and contemporary, the expats and their interpretations of the beauty and culture- we just couldn’t stop showing each other and snapping photos to share with you.
Many people come to Bali for the beaches and inexpensive food and products. A lot find out about Ubud and come for the culture, art and yoga. With all the beauty and activity around here, you might not be tempted to visit a museum, but don’t miss it!
Pande Wayan Suteja Neka is a former school teacher who visited Europe in 1975 where he saw Balinese art in museums there and wanted to display such work on the island of Bali. He opened the museum here and began to display his stone carving work and the art of local artists, expanding to include other work from Indonesia and inspiring future generations of artists by displaying their work as well.
The museum, comprised of seven buildings with lovely gardens and grounds designed like a traditional household compound, is now recognized by the Indonesian government and celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2007.
One display is of the work of Ari Smit,a Dutch artist who came here on a mandatory military service, was captured and imprisoned by the Japanese in WWII and chose to stay on in Indonesia after being released. He also supported young artists in their development by sharing art supplies with them.
It would be difficult to choose my favorite work here, but I am choosing some photos to depict the broad range of painting styles and some sculpture.
Balinese Paintings & Sculpture
We had a lovely day, broken up by a stroll into the village of Sanggingan for a coffee and shared jackfruit cake at Kopi Kats warung, just a five minute walk away. The drive up to to the museum and home on our scooter was a bit further out than we had ventured before and we were glad we braved the potholes and traffic.
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