A lot of people may call it dyslexic art, but for enthusiasts behind dyslexicadvantage.org, who encourage the public to appreciate more the extraordinary ability of dyslexic artists to develop very strong imaginations, mentally moving around an object and looking at it from different viewpoints or angles, the name holism art may fit better.
Young Indonesian artist Aqil Prabowo is one of those rare talented people with dyslexia. At only 12 years of age, he has already collected numerous accolades for his work, known to feature unusual objects and creatures such as a three-legged being, flying eye or alien as seen through “Trust”, “Tree for Hope” and “Experiment”. In early December, Prabowo teamed up with his mother Amalia Prabowo – author of the book “Wonderful Life”, which portrayed the mother-and-son struggle to raise awareness of dyslexia in Indonesia – as well as social art enthusiast Andrea Juwono and Artotel Thamrin. The result was a solo exhibition that showcased dozens of Prabowo’s paintings and other artworks. Taking place at Artotel Thamrin, Hope For Dyslexiart, as the show was called, attracted much public attention. Also present at the opening was actor Rio Dewanto, who earlier this year produced a movie inspired by Prabowo’s life story. Dyslexia is a reading disorder characterised by trouble with reading despite normal intelligence level, something Prabowo was diagnosed with at an early age. The verdict, he thought, was more a blessing that allowed him to communicate his feelings and thoughts through contemporary black-and-white drawings on plain paper, canvas, wall or furniture. “It is part of our social programme #ARTOTELforHOPE, through which we hold art exhibitions for social purposes. This year, we focused on children. We also have Wall of Hope at the lobby downstairs and the lobbies at our hotels in Surabaya and Bali, where anyone can stick a Post-it with their hopes written on it. Each Post-it costs five thousand rupiah, and at the end of the year, all the money raised will be donated to social foundations in Jakarta, Surabaya and Bali,” said Yulia Maria, Artotel Corporate Marketing Communications Manager. The money gained from silent auctions of Prabowo’s art, as well as from Wall of Hope, is slated to go to Gerakan Peduli Dyslexia in Jakarta. Meanwhile, an art bazaar held by Artotel Surabaya raised funds for Yayasan Peduli Kanker Anak Indonesia, to support chemotherapy for children with cancer. Another project by Artotel Bali provided financial support for disabled children at Yayasan Pembinaan Anak Cacat Khusus Tuna Grahita. www.artotelindonesia.com