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Lubang Buaya / Crocodile’s Pit

Crocodile leather, 2 video single channels 10’, soundscape with interviews

2014

This work refers to a key incident in Indonesian’s turbulent history. The historical site of the incident, ‘Lubang Buaya’ or literally the Crocodile’s Pit, is a well in Jakarta where the bodies of seven murdered army officers were dumped in 1965, during the 1 October coup attempt of the 30 September Movement. There are still question marks around the ‘real’ story of this massacre and the role of the Indonesian Communist Party and General Suharto.

The work invites you to place your head inside a hole at the head of each crocodile skin whilst listening to interviews about the incident and attempt to piece together details of the event. I interviewed approximately 30 people from different generations and backgrounds about the meaning of ‘Lubang Buaya’. The responses show how unclear the image of this dramatic incident is, even today.

Photography by Mie Cornoedus.