Anurendra Jegadeva (B.1965)
Anurendra Jegadeva is regarded as one of Malaysia’s leading contemporary artists for his poetic yet provocative socio-political works. A narrative artist and a painter of stories, he believes in the enduring power of the painted image, and has worked consistently to forge an effective approach to contemporary and historical themes.
Based in both Malaysia and Australia, his works stem from a personal experience of, and response to his subject – be it the post-colonial realities of multi-cultural Malaysia, Asian immigrant life in Australia, or the war in Iraq on his TV screen, Anurendra Jegadeva deftly weaves an autobiographical layer into the complex realities he seeks to capture.
Through a diversified body of work, he examines the ironies in contemporary life and probes the issue of cultural integration vis-à-vis the fusion of modern and traditional values. In the process, Anurendra Jegadeva employs a panoply of narrative tools – recurring motifs, colour symbolism, the framing devices of temple carvers and stained-glass makers, as well as comic book artists – the vocabulary of a multifarious existence.
His last solo exhibition ‘On the Way to The Airport – New Keepsakes’ was held at Wei-Ling Contemporary, Kuala Lumpur, in 2017, and coincided with the publication of a monograph documenting his 30 year career. Inspired by his return to Australia, he draws attention to migration as part of current world issues.
Anurendra Jegadeva was one of four Malaysian artists to represent Malaysia at the country’s first ever National Pavilion at the 58th International Art Exhibition – La Biennale di Venezia in 2019.