Candi Bentar (Temple Gates), 2016,  I Made Suratha,  Paint on unstretched canvas, Tang Teaching Collection 

Candi bentar are arch-shaped temple gates that symbolize the entrance into a sacred space. Their symmetry symbolizes balance, the preferred feeling in Balinese culture. The aling-aling (or stone screen) is placed in the middle, a few feet behind a temple’s entrance to confuse evil spirits and block them from entering the space. In performance, the temple gates provide a background and opening for the performance space. The artist, I Made Suratha, studied painting, carving, and traditional architecture at Udayana University in Denpasar, Indonesia. His work has been exhibited throughout Indonesia and Asia, and his paintings hang in collections around the world, including those of former Indonesian Presidents Suharto and Megawati.

Elizabeth Macy



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