Dear readers, this beautiful interview to the Artist Mukti Echwantono, you can read it in our Magazine in two versions, the Italian translation, and the original English version.
Cari lettori, questa bellissima intervista all’Artista Mukti Echwantono, potrete leggerla sul Magazine in una doppia versione, la traduzione in italiano, e la versione originale in inglese.
“ilprofumodelladolcevita.com” met Mukti Echwantono, Indonesian photographer of great artistic talent who have got an amazing technique.
He was born in Malang, Jawa Yimur, in Indonesia. He starts to love and passion for the world of photography in 2006. Mukti loves too much the mystical and evocative photograph that has strongly influenced his technique and his way of creating unique images and very originals. He believes that the beauty of photography is not necessarily linked to being bright and clean. The Art of Photography, in his view, is also a way of culture that we must learn to acquire respect to the sense of photography, to its meaning, for a photo that should not be linked only to the beauty to the beholder it, to a beauty for our eyes. Mukti believes that the art of photography should be able to strike at the heart, and generate sadness and darkness in the observer. An artistic photo must be able to give strong emotions that are the same emotions that are part of everyday life of a Man or a Woman of every day.
Mukti welcome in our online magazine, “ilprofumodelladolcevita.com”, which as you know is a Magazine young but read by many artists and professionals in the world of Art, Movie, TV, Theater and Performing Arts in general. Like young magazine, recently, we had the idea to give visibility through our interviews, not only to the Big Stars of international and Italian fame – that we interviewed several times and that you can read on our Magazine! – But also to young and very young artists, for artists who although have very talented have not, or have not yet had the opportunity to make themselves known to the great Italian public; to artists like you who have great talent but that few people know in Italy.
That said, Mukti, to start this conversation with me, what would you say to our readers that want to know you better from a human and professional perspective?
I would like to invite the audience viewed from different sides, different phases and I want to say what I saw and that was in my mind through the art of photography.
Good Mukti! About “Culture”, Mukti, I’d like to know what do you think about a beautiful phrase engraved in the great front of the “Teatro Massimo” of Palermo, famous because it was built by two of the greatest architects of the nineteenth century, Giovan Battista Filippo Basile and his son Ernesto Basile. The Palermo’s “Teatro Massimo” is the second largest in Europe in size and capacity to host spectators and owns the third acoustic quality in Europe only after the Opéra National de Paris and Vienna State Opera. The theater is a real great Work of Art where you mix many cultural and artistic approaches. The phrase engraved on the front of Theater is this: «The Art renews the people and it reveals its soul. It’s vain the entertainment scene when does’t seek to prepare the people for the future.» («L’arte rinnova i popoli e ne rivela la vita. Vano delle scene il diletto ove non miri a preparar l’avvenire.») Mukti, if you read this phrase like artist, what do you think about this, what do you inspire that you want to share with our readers?
Humans are creatures that have the ability to create goodness, truth, justice, and responsibility. As a civilized creatures, humans utilize his intellect to create happiness, both for himself and for the community for the perfection of life by creating a culture. In addition, humans are able to create, to be creative, to update, improve, develop and improve something there for the benefit of human life. And art, I believe, is a part of it. (smiles!).
Indeed you are right Mukti, the Art today is only a part of the civic and cultural evolution of modern man and woman. But the fact remains that it is the best form of expression of creativity and of human talent that definitely can be an example and can act as a stimulus to many people who love the beauty and human creativity to be projected in a better future!
How did began your passion for photograph began?
When I started to feel all the events around me and the idea of what I should to do to apply them in the my works.
Mukti, it’s very interesting what you said! It’s like you have received a call from the sky, a sudden inspiration that came from above, that brought you to do this wonderful art of photography. I really like what you said.
Mukti, how did your career start? What difficulties did you find in the beginning?
My difficulties in the beginning have been my particular kind of work against the current trend in that time, around the world of the visual art of photography. That’s why the most part of my work was themed gloomy and dark, even perhaps too dark for some people culturally accustomed to see art of photography from a different perspective!
Mukti in fact, your photographic art is very, very special. I really like it. I think you’re a Genius of Modern Photography. I say this because with your photos you do see something that otherwise he would never seen, and then are struck, as I was really impressed, positively of course! And all the works you create with your photos are pure innovative and creativity! I think so.
Mukti, I am a great reader of the greatest writer of the human soul in the history of world literature, just to stay in the field of Culture. In one of his best-known novels and most beautiful, “Notes from Underground” published in 1864, Fëdor Michajlovič Dostoevskij speaks, between the lines, about “The Theory of Humiliation”. Since the ’90s, some American scientists and psychologists, have made a real psychodynamic theory, a psychological model that assumes that: «I am more the humiliations we suffer in our lives to teach us to live better and to always make less mistakes: we learn from our experience and from ours mistakes, especially when others make us notice the mistakes we make and maybe they laugh about us!». Mukti, do you have ever suffered about your professional humiliations that have left their mark but at the same time made you grow professionally, and they have given you more boost and more strength to go on and continue in your very unique and very charming artistic career?
I’ve been there, Andrea. But I think they didn’t understand what I did in that time, what I do now, what I do today with my art! And I had understood that this kind of humiliation, it would make me stronger, it makes me more motivated to work hard and with more determination and passion. At this point, so it was that some of them began to see something interesting in my work. And I was happy for that! (smiles!).
It’s true the saying that nothing important is created without the sacrifice, the pain, the humiliation, the sweat of the brow, the hard work, study, talent and passion! I think that’s the heart of what you said! If there is not all this, you’re not a real artist. This kind of “no-artist” flees from the first disappointment, from the first difficulty. A truly talented artist, who has passion, he never gives up, he doesn’t give up to his talent and his passion. Even when his art is not recognized as such. And to make a great historical example, one of the greatest innovators of the visual arts, ever enjoyed throughout his short life, was Vincent Willem van Gogh (1853-1890)! (I smile!).
Mukti, you are a young photographer but very talented and guaranteed success (fingers crossed!!). Why, in your opinion, do people think that about you? What did you do that sparked this interest in your work?
I just described the reality that was happening around me. Sometimes, I know, maybe my art is difficult to understand for most people. But I’m sure they’ll start to be interested, because the experience that happens in their life and that they live daily, I normally create it in my reality of art of photography. On a piece of my works, one time, I received an email from a person of my audience. After he saw one of my work, she remembered about her sister who had left her family, and that since then they never more seen or met. This probably makes my work interested. And for me this is important!
Mukti, in fact, your art is very suggestive, dreamlike, it stimulates the imagination and the creativity of the beholder your work, give to the observer an important role: project out his soul inside of your works to try strong emotions ! And this is a talent that only great artists possess!
Mukti, to become a professional photographer, as you are today, how did you learn this art? Who have been your “Masters of Art”? How you’ve improved over time your art? Your artistic talent?
I learned this art by reading a lot of book of photography and visual art, and at the same time comparing them in long talks and discussions with some of the greatest masters of art of my country.
Mukti, to do your work where do you live in this moment of your professional life? Which is the Country you love more for do in the best way your job?
If it’ll be possible I would like to work in Europe or U.S.A.!
You’re right Mukti, in fact are the two continents where this kind of art has more successful and where there are more opportunities to work. Although today there are new emerging countries that give much space to art, such as Australia, South-Africa, Canada … and others!
Have you ever thought to leave everything? Did you ever think of giving up to your passion for the photos?
I stopped for a year and I thought to leave all. But my passion for photography was too strong, and so after an year I went back on my feet and I started again to do photos. So I decided to devote all my time to photography, to my art!! (smiles!). During that year I understood I was not able to leave the photography! (smiles again!).
What did you tell to your parents when you informed them that you wanted to do this work: hard, difficult and full of pitfalls?
My parents have always given me the freedom to express my talents and those that are my passions.
Since you started what is the best thing that you love to remember? And the worst thing?
The most amazing thing I remember most is when my audience told me about the sensations and about the memories he had experienced whacking my opera, my works, and how my work reflected itself in their soul.
I luckily have no bad things to remember! I always try to love everyone and to understand all the difficulties I’ve had, give them a sense, learn from mistakes and go on along my way.
Mukti, beautiful words! But you have to know that is not so for all artists. You were lucky, as you have said yourself. In Europe and in USA the difficulties that an artist has to face by emerge are larger and harder. But for you, we’ll know that only when you will transfer in Europe or in USA to express your talent and become a very important and successful photographer. I’m sure about that! But fingers crossed, of course! You have got a great talent and you’ll have a great successful in these countries! Now you just have to find the strength and the courage to tread new battlegrounds!
Mukti, have you ever had to make compromises in order to get ahead in your job? In Italy often and unfortunately this is a “must”. What was your experience with this?
This may occur in almost all parts of the world. Sometimes we have to compromise to get a better direction. But I can do that until I haven’t to sacrifice my idealism and my morality. Only in this case I can accept it.
There is a border beyond which we should never pass on. There is a threshold that you should never pass beyond for remaining a true Artist. Overstep that kind boundary, exceed that threshold, it means to become another thing; it means taking a road of no return that is no longer the road of the true and pure Artist, but that of an artist who has sold his soul! I think so, Mukti! A bit like the story of Dorian Gray in the beautiful novel by Oscar Wilde (1854-1900) “The Picture of Dorian Gray”; or Faust who does a wicked pact with Mephistopheles in the beautiful eponymous dramatic poem by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe! (Smile!).
When you were a child, what were your myths in the world of the photos? Who were your Teachers? Who inspires you as a photographer with proven experience and great successful?
I’ve got some Artists who inspire me. They are Indonesians: the Master Fendi Siregar and the Master Ray Bachtiar Dradjat. I had several opportunities to discuss with them about European and American photographers. I admire the work of the Italian Paolo Roversi, of the German, naturalized Australian, Helmut Newton, and of the American, of Italian origin, Francesca Woodman (1958-1981), she had a very great talent, but who died very young!
All of them are or have been very great talents and very large innovators, Mukti! You have chosen well your inspirations, no doubt about it!
Who are the top-models who you would want to have in all of your works? There are photographer who cannot do without their favorite top-model and call them always. Do you have top-models or actresses who you want have always in your shooting?
My dream is to work with Milla Jovovich and realize for her a great Work of photograph (smiles!). Yes, I have some favorite photo-model. I think that not everyone the photo-models are the same: with some photo-models you can do some works, with others you can do others works.
Ours is an Italian Magazine read mainly by people of show business, visual arts, cinema, and others kinds of art in general. What do you think of Italian visual arts in the last five / six years? Been the Italian visual arts of today?
I’ve never been in Italy. I just simply worked for exhibiting my work in Italy in 2012.
Do you have in your mind an Italian photographer who you would like to learn something from him? If yes, why? Who is in this moment in the world the most important an talented artist of photographer?
As I said before, I would really like to work with Paolo Roversi. I hope a day there will be a chance. I’d like too much learn from him! (smiles!).
What are you working on now? When will we see your next work? And where?
Perhaps between one or two months will be published two of my works.
I am currently preparing its project. I am currently preparing this my very important project.
In which Italian city would you like to exhibit? And why?
My works were exhibited in Pordenone and Rome! For different reasons I wasn’t there! Two important cities could be the initial goal to get ahead in my career! (smiles!)
I’m sure, Mukti, you can certainly be a great start in Italy, and then in the rest of Europe!
How do you manage the emotional life, the love, the hard work and intensity of what you do?
To balance my life, I often go to the mountain and I often share my life with my best friends.
One last question, Mukti. It ‘a question that I love because it makes us suddenly do a jump in the past time, when we were children and we lived with our dreams and with our beautiful hopes: do you have a dream that you carry inside as a child? A dream that today you would like to realize? Would you tell us which is the dream and why this dream?
I have a dream that I’m yet trying to realize. I want to work for my Art. I want to change the shape into a book of photography. This is my dream since I was a child who dreamed to become a great photographer. One day I read the words written by an anonymous: “life without dreams is a tough world”. That to say that maybe, the dream of living a dream is the best dream that you can have for a wonderful life!!
Thank you Mukti for taking your precious time for our Magazine, and good luck for your work. We hope to have you again with us to tell to our Magazine about your successful and to show us your future great works. Thanks again and fingers crossed for your future!
Many thanks to having me on you magazine. It’s means a lot for me. (Mukti makes us a beautiful smile, greets all of us, and leaves us for continue his dream to become a Big Star of Photography!).
Readers wishing to know more about Mukti Echwantono, they may consult some interesting links that we propose to follow:
Mukti Echwantono – slide-show photos by Andrea Giostra:
Mukti Echwantono – official web-site:
Mukti Echwantono – official Facebook page:
Mukti Echwantono – official commercial Facebook page:
Mukti Echwantono – Instagram page:
Anyone wishing to knows the author of the interview, Andrea Giostra, can consult his Official Facebook Page: