Jakarta 32°c is a student forum presenting the latest visual works of students from various universities in Jakarta. Since 2004, the event has been taking place every two years, held by ruangrupa, a contemporary art organization in Jakarta, alongside with a group of students that call themselves Komplotan Jakarta 32°c. The event presents a series of programs, consisting of exhibitions, discussions, artist talks, performance arts, and film screenings.
This show case presents best works exhibited in Jakarta 32°c in 2004, 2006, and 2008. It is held in Senayan City as a part of the Battle Zone program of Jakarta Biennale 2009. Jakarta 32°c was first held to respond to the lack of dialogues among the university students in Jakarta regarding the possibility of presenting their visual works to the larger public. Previously, exhibitions of visual works by students had been done merely within the compound of each university. There had been no meaningful criticism and birth of ideas among students and teachers. The exhibitions also suffered from a lack of visitors, whether in terms of students from other universities or the larger public.
Initiative to hold the event emerged in late 2003 among ruangrupa and a number of students from several universities, the progenitor of the group of Komplotan Jakarta 32°c. Its first exhibition in 2004 had been warmly welcomed by students, as they could present their works, be involved in sound competitions, and establish interuniversity network to share creative ideas. Jakarta 32°c was then established to be held every two years. After six years, there have been three Jakarta 32°c exhibitions, i.e. in 2004, 2006, and 2008. Wecan there observe how far the artistic achievements of the students have gone. The students are not merely from art education institutions, but instead have varied background. The event has been enthusiastically welcomed, and youth are flocking to the National Gallery of Indonesia, which has been the venue of the exhibition. High school students, mass media, and the public—who are actually the main target of the event—have also been enthusiastic about the event.