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The Daughter of a Distant Land by Sherchle

The Daughter of a Distant Land by Sherchle

Regular price $230.00 USD
Regular price Sale price $230.00 USD
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“This Daughter is quite literally far from her homeland.

It is believed that her ancestors came from a land of hard workers and black and white bears, who wandered to the grounds of Java; settling and mingling, shedding the scents from before.

In the eyes of the homeland tribe, she may be closer to a creature from outer space; not really belonging here or there.

But perhaps it’s just one of nature’s weird episodes. Perhaps it’s not that awful. Perhaps this odd intersection is a new kind of homeland, one she calls her own.”

Intrigued with the thoughts behind René Magritte’s The Son of Man, a self-portrait in which he spoke of how everything we see hides another thing, Sherchle created this self-portrait depicting her cultural background with some bits of (partially hidden) memories and stories.

The split outfit and gesture represents the two cultures that she is from: Chinese and Javanese. It also represents her degree of familiarity with them. Being a product of two ethnicities, ideally it would get her extra cultural knowledge points, but in her case, she has only gotten half of each culture’s Intro chapter.

Her ties with Chinese culture appear only once a year, during the Chinese New Year celebration, when family members gather and have a meal. The highlight of that day for her and her brothers (and cousins) is usually the Hong Bao (red packet), which rests nicely in her pocket.

On the Javanese side, she has absorbed a bit of the language growing up by listening to her grandparents daily. In the artwork, she is repping it by wearing a fabric with Batik prints on her hips. This particular pattern of Batik is called Kawung Mataram, which is believed to be created during the Mataram Empire era, around the year 1593–1645. It is also said that the pattern represents a manifestation of the four elements (fire, wind, water, earth), and that it serves as a reminder that a leader must be able to master four communication skills; communication with thy God, communication with thyself, communication with fellow mankind, and communication with nature.

Bonus trivia: The burning house is a core memory of hers, in which her house was literally on fire, and the Scandinavian furniture store behind it was where she often spent her time afterwards.

Artwork inspired by:

The Son of Man by René Magritte (1964)

Art Print Details:

Giclée Fine Art Print (SGD 300)

Limited edition of 100, hand-numbered, unframed
Comes with Certificate of Authenticity
310gsm Textured Fine Art Paper (100% Cotton, Acid-Free, Archival)
42 x 59.4cm (A2)

Digital Art Print (SGD 80)

Open edition, unframed
29.7 x 42 cm (A3)

Artist Bio:

Michelle Sherrina, also known on the Internet as Sherchle, is a Jakarta-based freelance illustrator who enjoys hoarding collecting novelties from various passages of time. Somehow, playing with words and narratives and turning them into visuals comes naturally to her, as she references a wide selection of things; from pop culture to objects found (or conversations heard) in grocery stores. Having worked with Google, GIPHY, and Disney+ Hotstar, she can confirm that they are all a nice bunch. Her side activities include running a merchandise shop, explaining to her grandparents what her job is, and sharpening her mind reading writing skills.


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