Natasha Tontey

b. 1989, Jakarta, Indonesia
Lives and works in Yogyakarta, Indonesia

Natasha Tontey is an Indonesian artist and designer, interested in exploring the concept of fiction as a method of speculative thinking. Through her artistic practice, she investigates how fear, horror, and terror could be manifested to control the public.

Tontey is of Minahasan descent, an indigenous group of people from North Sulawesi. Drawing on her ancestral culture, she creates joyous and irreverent digital animations, performances and installations that are subversive on several levels. Firstly, animistic cosmologies are reimagined as posthuman alternatives to the anthropomorphic modernity of the dominantly Muslim Indonesian state. Secondly, these origin stories themselves get queered, countering the macho, quasi-military tendencies of contemporary Minahasan culture with more gender-queer and feminist interpretations of traditional myth. All this is rendered in Tontey’s cheerful ‘more-is-more’ hypermedia patchwork of various aesthetics: shock videogame 3D animation techniques, visual collage, cascading windows and computer-generated voiceovers. The effect is a psychedelic mashup of visual styles that echoes Tontey’s inclusive vision of multibeing flourishing.

Her works have been shown internationally in the Next Wave Festival (2016), the Koganecho Bazaar (2015), and the Instrument Builders Project–Kyoto Art Centre. She also had a solo exhibition at Cemeti Institute for Art and Society in Yogyakarta. In 2022, Natasha was a featured artist in the Singapore Biennale.

Biogrpahy information from Schloss-Post and ArtReview, July 2023

Country: Indonesia
Social Media: @krazykosmickid
Website: tontey.org