Prince Raden Saleh - Aristocrat,
Artist, Scientist and Patriot
Prince Raden Saleh Syarif Bustaman
was born in 1811 into the noble Indonesian Regent family of the famous Kijai
Ngabehi Kertoboso Bustaman (1681-1759),
directly related to the Mataram Kingdom and Sultanate, just as his
great-grandnephew Dr. George H. Hundeshagen (gelar Raden Adipati Ario), founder and chairman of the
Prince Raden Saleh Foundation.
The Bustaman family encompassed 20 Regents and at least 7 Regent families
throughout Indonesia, and is remembered for their heroic support of Prince
Diponegoro's struggle for independence.
Our family suffered tremendously because of their devoted support of Pangeran
Prince Raden Saleh's
Raden Sukur and his
brother (also by the name) Raden Saleh, sons
celebrated and beloved Regent
of Semarang Kyai
Adipati Suryamangalla, also fought on the side of Prince
arrest of Prince Diponegoro
by General de Kock, Prince Raden Saleh moved to Europe,
where he studied art under Cornelius Kruseman and Andreas Schelfhout.
Although he was the first Indonesian artist to paint in the Western style, the
fact that he expressed individuality and creativity in his work (as opposed to
the traditional approach which stressed the reproduction of established forms
and styles) showed the way for future Indonesian artists to express their own
ideas more freely.
It was from Kruseman that Prince Raden Saleh learned his skills as a
portraitist, and he was received at various European courts where he was
commissioned mainly to do portraits. From 1839, he spent five years at the court
of Ernst I, Grand Duke of Saxe-Coburg-Gotha, who became an important patron.
From Schelfhout, Prince Raden Saleh learned the skills of a landscape artist.
Raden Saleh visited
many European cities, as well as Algiers.
While in The Hague
a lion tamer allowed
him to study his lions, andsubsequently
wild animal scenes brought
Prince Raden Saleh
During his stay in Europe, Raden Saleh met with many important
painters and artists, such as Eugene Delacroix.
In 1839 Prince Raden Saleh painted one of his masterpieces named “Lions and
Snake”, which symbolizes the eternal fight of good against evil, and Delacroix
painted a very similar theme called “Tiger and Snake” in 1862, again twenty-three
years after the Prince Raden Saleh original.
Prince Raden Saleh returned to Indonesia in 1851, having lived in Europe for
years and subsequently married into the family of the
Sultan of Yokyakarta.
continued to paint, producing portraits of Javanese aristocrats, and many
Prince Raden Saleh died on April 23, 1880, after returning from a second
extended stay in Europe
which he undertook to visit his family one last time.
Ever since then Prince Raden Saleh has been the celebrated and
cherished Superstar of Indonesian arts, and already three years after his
passing away his timeless masterpieces were displayed at the 1883 World
Exhibition in Amsterdam in a special Raden-Saleh-Pavillon.
Prince Raden Saleh's most
his oil painting
'The Capture of Prince Diponegoro' which was returned to
Indonesia from the Royal Palace of the Netherlands in 1978. It
is now on display
attheMuseum Istana Jakarta. In the painting, Prince Raden Saleh deliberately
made the heads of the Dutch big, a reference to their pomposity and arrogance,
and also to make them 'laughable' figures in comparison with the well-balanced
figures of the Indonesians.
It is believed that the Javanese man covering his face with his hands, standing
Diponegoro, and the Javanese man standing with his head bowed in the
crowd at the bottom of the stairs, are both self-portraits.
this link to our
Prince Raden Saleh Online Gallery the world-wide only and
comprehensive exhibition of Raden Saleh
original paintings, watercolours and drawings. We are home to the largest collection of
his works of art
and media world-wide, and at the same time the most comprehensive source on Raden Saleh related
topics and research information.
Dr. George H. Hundeshagen, as well a descendent of the legendary Kijai
Ngabehi Kertoboso Bustaman (1681-1759)
and the Mataram Kingdom and Sultanate, has issued
selection of Raden Saleh’s finest masterpieces
in new, modern interpretations.
In his homage to
his great-granduncle, Dr. Hundeshagen also expresses his deep passion and
love for Indonesia, the country of his ancestors, and brings to life once more
the genius and brilliance of Prince Raden Saleh. Dr. Hundeshagen has already
made himself a name and gained recognition in the art world of Europe and
America, not only as curator of his great-granduncle's fame and works of art,
but also for his bold modern adaptations of his various masterpieces as
displayed in the
Gallery Raden Saleh.
Dr. Hundeshagen's works of art - just as his great-granduncle's timeless
masterpieces - are already part of the private collections of Her Majesty Queen
Elizabeth II of Great Britain, Her Majesty Queen Beatrix of The Netherlands, as
well as the government of the Republic of Indonesia.