Savyavasa - Art in Luxury Living


Art is not just an accessory for a contemporary living space but can also become the identity for a development project. Fine art has a way to evoke emotions and create a luxurious feel in a living environment. When chosen carefully, art can enrich the personality and connect to the design narrative of the space. At Savyavasa, a new luxury residential development in Jakarta, art is as essential as any other design element.

Launched in 2020 by JSI Group and Swire Properties, Savyavasa is located in the heart of South Jakarta. The development ‘redefines the concept of understated luxury by reinterpreting natural landscapes and Indonesia’s robust artisan culture in modern living’. Yabu Pushelberg Design, based in Toronto and New York, designed the interior of Savyavasa’s premiere four-bedroom units and the sales and marketing gallery. Both the founders, Glenn Pushelberg and George Yabu, are respected art collectors and naturally design their bespoke interiors with art in mind. ISA Art and Design was the art consultant for the project and worked closely with the designers to select contemporary Indonesian art and photography that would reflect the values of the project and stand out in any international setting.

Expansive ceiling height is a most impressive feature of the four-bedroom unit. The neutral interiors needed a colour point as well as large artwork. ISA selected an impressive pair of photos featuring the unique landscape of Sumba by Tito Rikardo. Tito’s landscape photography draws inspiration from his travels throughout Indonesia. His photos in Savyavasa illustrate starry nights that draw you into the nightscape as well as bring nature from the outside to the inside.

A dark moody interior in the study required a calm ambiance, so Javanese artist Hengki Koentjoro was selected. Hengki is an accomplished photographer specialising in capturing the spectral domain that lies amidst the shades of black and white. Exploring along the borderlines of light and shadow, his work celebrates complexity in the minimalist form and delves into the spiritual and the physical.

An important work by Mujahidin Nurrahman who created hand-crafted arabesque motifs on paper was selected for the hallway. The artist challenges pre-conceived perceptions that exist on a multitude of social, political, and spiritual beliefs, which challenge the stigmatism of Islamic practices.

Fun was the brief in the media room where a playful light and sound installation by Bandung-based artist Bagus Pandega is installed. Bagus’s works are highly innovative as he experiments with movement, sound, and light through electronics. The artwork is an arrangement of lightbulbs that also function to light the room. The use of this artwork gives a strong personality to the space and fits the whimsical theme of the room.

The interiors featured art by a range of Indonesian artists from the younger to the more established. A selection of lithographs from well-known artists such as Christine Ay Tjoe, Ugo Untoro, Mella Jaarsma were incorporated in the master bedroom while younger contemporary artists including Ines Katamso, Ayunda Rega Putri, Sanchia, and Claudia Dian were used throughout the space.

Indonesian-French artist, Ines Katamso’s artwork in the girl’s bedroom was inspired by the Balinese kites children play with. Ines takes pride in her dual identity through her works, frequently using organic shapes and colours which she translates into paintings and murals. Playing with colour and nature-shaped elements is a great way to embody the fun identity of a room. In contrast, Rega Ayundya Putri’s work amasses intricate details created through solemn ballpoint strokes to expose an intimate, quiet conversation with her subconscious.

The reception of the Sales Marketing Gallery has a monochrome ambiance. In a nod to nature, ISA Art and Design connects the space with a work by Malaysian artist Chong Siew Ying. Known for her new Chinese ink paintings, these works are identified by dynamic gestural brush strokes and expressive compositions adapted by Chinese and western technical influences. Siew Ying’s paintings are profoundly emotive, embracing broad themes such as natural human sentiments and referencing literary themes and concepts. These monochrome landscape artworks complement the design narrative.

Upon completion, the wide sales gallery, with high ceilings of almost seven meters, and the lack of colour in the room, felt empty. In this space, artwork was the focal point. ISA installed a large mural by Sinta Tantra. Sinta is a London-based artist of Balinese descent and an accomplished muralist. Her murals are paintings executed on an architectural scale. Strongly influenced by her Balinese heritage and traditions, and drawn from the language of abstract geometry, Sinta’s art is a celebration of light and colour, and the artwork gives a solid artistic grounding to the gallery.

At Savyavasa art, architecture, and interiors align to convey elegance and luxury. By choosing southeast Asian artists for this project, it not only proves to be a good investment for the developers, but reflects the creativity and dynamicity of the region.

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Deborah Iskandar
Deborah Iskandar is the principal of ISA Art Advisory (, which advises clients on buying and selling art and building collections, and the founder of Indonesian Luxury (, the definitive online resource for Indonesians looking to acquire, build and style their luxury homes.