Malaysia / A+ Works of Art
Izat Arif (b. 1986) is an artist based in Kuala Lumpur whose works range from drawings and installations to videos and objects. In Izat’s work, power structures are given their own personal identities, with him cheekily role-playing the characters of some of our puppet masters in property development, bureaucracy, and art criticism. His approach is often journalistic, where satire is fused with a responsive leaping between different subjects that speak to current revelations in popular media and culture.
In recent years, Izat’s concerns have broadened to include not only the actions and excesses of those involved in the production of power but equally to those who give weight to their claims. A predominant material focus on linoleum sheets — a cheap vinyl material for interior furnishing with prints that imitate more luxurious surfaces — challenges his viewer’s positions, aspirations or complicities in the perpetration of power; tapping into everyday material and topics is a way to engage more deeply with the spectrum of involvement.
Recent solo exhibitions by Izat include Gentle Reminders, Richard Koh Fine Art, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2020); Kenangan itu, hanya mainan bagimu…, Mutual Aid Projects, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2020) and Semangat Kejiranan, Everybody Loves Good Neighbours, The Vitrine, NTU CCA, Singapore (2018). Selected group exhibitions include Motif:Lamaran, ARTJOG Jogjakarta National Museum (2023); Travel Agency, presented by A+ Works of Art, HeluTrans ArtSpace, Singapore (2022); Fragmenting Yesterday, Reshaping Tomorrow, ICAD, Jakarta (2022); and Domestic Bliss, Pollination, co-developed with The Factory Contemporary Arts Centre Vietnam, Ilham Gallery, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (2019). In 2022, Izat was a recipient of the ACME-Khazanah Artist Residency in London.