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Lisa Jafri • Hazul Bakar • Fahmi Taib • Hady Aris • Nazmi Ismail

September 23 to October 13, 2014


Equal Art Group adalah kumpulan seni yang ditubuhkan pada Oktober 2013, dan dianggotai oleh lima orang anak muda dari Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan (ASWARA), iatu Nazmi Ismail, Fahmi Taib, Hazul Bakar, Hady Aris, dan Lisa Jafri. Ia diasaskan oleh penggiat seni terkenal tanah air Suzlee Ibrahim. ‘Equal’ di sini merujuk kepada “sama dengan”, iaitu penambahan dari segi bilangan. Ia diumpamakan seperti bilangan yang kecil akan meningkat jika ditambah bilangan yang lain untuk mendapatkan bilangan yang lebih besar, atau dengan kata lain “ramai lebih baik daripada keseorangan”. Tujuan kumpulan ini ditubuhkan adalah untuk memberi usaha sama dalam membina kesatuan agar dapat menghasilkan karya yang berkualiti serta memberi impak terhadap dunia seni bagi menyampaikan sesuatu mesej kepada audien melalui karya visual. Konsep logo “EQUAL” berdasarkan ungkapan “think out of the box”. Simbol yang menyerupai seakan sebuah rumah yang tidak mengikut ketepatan pembinaanya. Tetapi struktur dalamannya yang mempunyai satu garis tegak dan dua garis lintang di tengah member maksud kepada kekukuhan dan keteguhan yang diperoleh melalui bersepaduan ahli kumpulan. Manakala bagi ruangan yang terbuka pula, ia diibaratkan seperti sebuah pintu yang dibuka untuk perkongsian ilmu. Akhir sekali, garisan diluar struktur diumpamakan sebagai sokongan. Tujuan sokongan tersebut adalah untuk memberi lebih kekuatan terhadap sebuah rumah dan ia bermaksud kami ingin memberi satu sokongan baru terhadap dunia seni tanah air mahupun luar negara bagi mencipta satu perpaduan. Oleh itu, logo ini direka sama dengan tujuan penubuhan kumpulan ini.

Equal Art Group is an art collective formed in October 2013 and comprises five young artists from Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan (ASWARA), namely Nazmi Ismail, Fahmi Taib, Hazul Bakar, Hady Aris, dan Lisa Jafri. It was founded by well-known artist Suzlee Ibrahim. ‘Equal’ in this case is similar to the mathematical understanding of the word, relating to numerical addition. Think of it as adding to a small number to arrive at a larger grouping, akin, in other words, to ‘strength in numbers’. The collective was formed with the intent of creating quality artworks through cooperative endeavor, and as a means to bring greater impact to the art scene, through messages conveyed via the visual medium. The EQUAL logo is based on the metaphor “think out of the box”. Symbolically, it resembles a house not perfectly built. Within the structure, however, lies a vertical line with two horizontal lines across it, signifying strength and determination through the cohesiveness of the group’s membership. The opening in the outer line signifies an open door,to facilitate knowledge sharing. Finally, the line extending outside the box denotes support, providing additional strength to the structure, symbolically denoting the group’s desire to provide ‘support’ to the art scene both locally and abroad, in their quest to create a kind of unity in the arts. The symbolisms exhibited by the logo ties in closely to the reasons this collective was formed.


The existence of artist collectives is certainly not something new, and throughout history, many such collectives have emerged the world over. Artists have formed such groupings for many different reasons, and not necessarily because of artistic commonalities alone. For young artists beginning their career in visual art, post-academia, coming together as a collective is a common path taken, as they endeavor to make their foothold in the art scene. Such is the case with the Equal Art Group, formed by five artists from Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan, better known as ASWARA, namely Fahmi Taib, Hady Aris, Hazul Bakar, Lisa Jafri, and Nazmi Ismail. BEGIN, as the word itself implies, is a starting point for these five artists. Although all of them have previously exhibited as individuals, this outing marks a new phase in their respective careers, exhibiting together as a single unit. The exhibition, like many other collective debuts, doesn’t have a central theme by design. But BEGIN, upon some contemplation, does seem to have a cohesive thrust, although unintended. For Artemis Art, the exhibition is Equal Art Group’s view of Malaysian life in general, told from five different points of reference. In this exhibition, you’ll find the hidden ambitions and reminiscence of Fahmi Taib’s child subjects, commentaries on nationhood and social media in the works of Hadi Aris, Hazul Bakar’s take on how Malaysians simply love their icons, Lisa Jafri’s study of urban decay, and finally, environmental concerns depicted in Nazmi Ismail’s art pieces. An un-themed debut exhibition by a collective that chances upon an unintended commonality? Now that is certainly a ‘good start’. And for Artemis Art, such is what BEGIN is. We congratulate the Equal Art Group on their first group exhibtion and wish them all the very best as they embark further into the realm of visual artistry, with strength in numbers on their side. And may this be the start of bigger and better things to come. U.C. Loh & S. Jamal Al-Idrus Artemis Art


I’m President (2014) Oil on Canvas, 76 x 76 cm

My First Drawing (Artist) (2014) Oil on Canvas, 76 x 76 cm

Fahmi Taib

I’m A Champion (2014) Oil on Canvas 61 x 91 cm

Childhood (2012) Oil on Canvas 90 x 122 cm


Emotiobey (2014) Acrylic on Canvas, 70 x 50 cm

Es Lebe Deutschland (2014) Acrylic on Canvas, 70 x 50 cm

Hady Aris

Instant Likes (2014) Acrylic on Canvas, 50 x 40 cm

Tunku’s Spirit (2014) Acrylic on Canvas, 70 x 50 cm


Dr. M (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 90 x 60 cm

Pak Ajis (2014), Mixed Media on Canvas, 90 x 60 cm

Hazul Bakar

Self Portrait 1 (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 30 x 30 cm

Self Portrait 2 (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 30 x 30 cm

Siti Nurhalizah (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 90 x 60 cm


Umpan Ayam (2014), Mixed Media on Plywood, 60 x 90 cm

Sesak (2014), Mixed Media on Canvas, 30 x 30 cm

Lisa Jafri Hobos (2014), Mixed Media on Canvas, 60 x 90 cm

Lorong Gelap (2014), Mixed Media on Canvas, 60 x 90 cm


Fortune (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 91 x 91 cm

Destruction (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 91 x 91 cm

Back Off! (2014) Mixed Media on Canvas, 91 x 91 cm


Deforestation (2014), Mixed Media on Canvas, 85 x 122 cm

Nazmi Ismail

Save Us! (2014), Mixed Media on Canvas, 61 x 76 cm


BEGIN merujuk kepada kata ‘mula’, iaitu permulaan bagi sesuatu. Tajuk BEGIN ini memberi maksud kepada sesuatu revolusi yang baru dengan merujuk kepada penubuhan EQUAL ART GROUP, sebagai permulaan kepada kumpulan seni pertama dari Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan (ASWARA). Pameran BEGIN ini juga merupakan pameran pertama EQUAL ART GROUP sebagai permulaan yang baik untuk kami menghasilkan karya yang lebih baik pada masa akan datang.

BEGIN, as the word implies, refers to the start of something. In this case BEGIN indicates a revolution of sorts, and directly refers to the formation of the EQUAL ART GROUP, the first artist collective to emerge from Akademi Seni Budaya dan Warisan Kebangsaan (ASWARA). BEGIN is also the first exhbition by EQUAL ART GROUP, a good start for the group to produce increasingly better artworks in time to come.

Project Manager U.C. Loh Writing & Translation Equal Art Group & Artemis Art Photography & Imagery Equal Art Group & Artemis Art Catalog Concept & Design 6is9 Designwerkz Published by Artemis Corporation Sdn Bhd Lot 21 & 22 Level G4 Publika@Dutamas Block C5 Solaris Dutamas No. 1 Jalan Dutamas 1 50480 Kuala Lumpur T :+603 6211 1891 M :+6019 664 7088 +6012 373 2188

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BEGIN - Equal Art Group  

BEGIN is a group exhibition by five young artists, all graduates from the now discontinued ASWARA Diploma in Fine Art program. The exhibitio...

BEGIN - Equal Art Group  

BEGIN is a group exhibition by five young artists, all graduates from the now discontinued ASWARA Diploma in Fine Art program. The exhibitio...

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