I am a visual artist based in Bali, Indonesia. I communicate stories, ideas, and other information through various visual media, such as photography, videography, animations, and motion graphic design.

I remember when I started taking pictures of friends and family during that first year of playing around with my old film camera when I was probably ten years old and I remember that day possibly because that realization struck me anything in the world can be translated into a picture and I possess that magical power, the ability to turn things into pictures.

self-portrait
Rico Surya | self-portrait

I look at artists, you know it’s a privilege to do this. That’s already something that I cherished, to be able to wake up and create something.

The idea that I can create something out of nothing. The fact that I have the imagination and skill to bring something from my head to the page, canvas, sculpture, etc. Whether it’s a great ad campaign or a cool design in an animated film, it’s always cool seeing the finished product and thinking how it all started from nothing.

And learning how to maybe even fight ethically, fairly, using materials that may not be my fists or may not be guns, but maybe it’s more thought in words, how I communicate things through visual art has been what’s like pushed my passion to a continuum.

I moved, not inspired, but compelled by conditions that I feel I can contribute something to transform the situation.

I came from the marketing world. While most photographers were interested in taking photos of their girlfriends, my trajectory was completely different. From the very beginning, I wanted to use my skill to help sell things, to create a good impression, and improve the conversion rate of brands.

It’s not just about my art, perhaps the project can be tailored to educate policymakers and encourage them to relieve the problem.

I’ve allowed my practice to unfold very naturally, very organically, and I’m open to wherever it kind of leads and opens up to. I think just having the spirit and that curiosity of how am I gonna be different just by me seeing other people work on a higher level makes me want to push myself, just pushing constantly and perseverance, become a better version of myself.

I don’t know what will stick for another thirty to fifty years, I’ll be able to look back and retrospect and determine whether something contributed to a larger conversation. I hope that I’ve made work that will. That’s what I’ve worked really hard for; is to hopefully expand the conversation to be more inclusive, and to include people like myself, but also people completely unlike myself as well.