Did you know that cats control portals? Many cultures recognize cats as powerful creatures. Buddhists in Southeast Asia and the Ancient Egyptians treated cats like gods and believed that cats controlled the pathways to the afterlife. Geed believes cats control the portal to the present moment by helping you connect with your surroundings. I had the pleasure of spending a few days with Indra Geed, a talented artist from Bali, Indonesia. I first stumbled upon his work while wandering around Ubud, the art mecca of Bali. This is the graffiti piece that drew me into Geed’s work:
He calls his work Psychedelic Surrealism, a style that employs vibrant colors and unexpected images. Cats are a common focus in Geed’s work and Peek is an attestment to this theme. “Peek”, which will be featured in his upcoming solo exhibition in December, embodies feminine energies in a powerful and elegant way.
“Peek” is one of the featured works at Geed’s exhibition that will run from December 14 to January 14 in Canguu.
Like many artists, Geed experimented with different styles before arriving at his own. He was intentional about creating his own style because to him, “A style is an identity.” Geed invested much time and effort to create his own style and develop his artistic skills, which range from drawing to painting to graffiti. “I thought I would never have a style because it was a long process. It took me quite a few years until I recently found my style, which is Psyhcedelic Surealism. It’s the one that connects with me the most. I only found it because I tried so many different styles.”
Geed’s road to success was not an easy coast as it required perseverance and optimism. “There have been so many days with frustration and thoughts about giving up on art and getting a job that gives me a decent income. I tried working in hotels, internet cafes, and several other jobs.” Ultimately, it was Geed’s optimism and his ability to transform ideas that made him successful. As a kid, he was criticized for being “weird” and doing things differently than his classmates. “People use weird because they are too lazy to think about our complexities so I turned it into a positive. I took it to mean unique not weird.”
His story also shows the unlimited potential we all hold despite our insecurities and confusion. “I had no idea I had the potential to be an artist. I was still figuring out who I was. But there was nothing to lose.” Today Geed proudly calls himself an artist and works in his Ubud studio full time. He says “I have happiness because I love what I do. I am an artist for myself, my environment, and hopefully the world.”
When asked what he would tell his younger self, Geed said “I’d tell myself that you are going to be confused and that’s alright. It’s unfortunate that most young people do not see the opportunities that exist. They forget to see other possibilities that enable them to create art. That’s why next year I want to offer workshops, classes, and events for young artists. My biggest piece of advice to young artists is that if you it make it possible for yourself you will make it happen.”
His piece Wild Lucid will also be featured in his upcoming exhibition. This piece tells the story of “a woman who is having a lucid dream and has her eyes open in another world.” Make sure to visit Geed’s exhibition for a chance to delve into the world of Psychedelic Surrealism.
To get information about his exhibition see his Instagram or visit his studio
Jl. Penestanan Kelod, Sayan, Ubud in Bali Indonesia.
Claudia is a travel blogger who focuses on Southeast Asian street art and culture. You can follow her on Instagram @nomad.lyfe or email her [email protected]