Home to the coastal resorts of Uluwatu and the terraced paddy fields of Canggu, Bali’s sandy beaches and lush greenery are testament to the island’s natural beauty.
However, it is also home to local artisans, painters and visionaries, as evidenced by the many art galleries on the island. Some of them are dedicated exclusively to crafts, while others share spaces with cafes and hotels. Here is our pick of the best contemporary art galleries in Bali for an artistic day trip!
Feliz’Eye Art Painting Gallery & Concept Store
Formerly known as ReservoArt Gallery, Feliz’Eye Art Painting Gallery & Concept Store retains the same old passion and eye for art. Opened in 2007, the space has hosted artworks from over 50 local and international artists over the years — and they don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.
Their range is also diverse; From original paintings to housewares and even clothing, you’re sure to find something you love. Think Asian and traditional Balinese paintings, abstract and figurative art styles, and contemporary creations by artists like Kiem Liang and Dimitri Zoellin.
The Feliz’Eye Art Painting Gallery & Concept Store is located at Jl. Kayu Jati No.12, Kerobokan Kelod, Kuta Utara, Kabupaten Badung, Bali 80361 (near Mexicola), p. +62 811 3865 101.
The Crate Café near central Canggu has dedicated part of the space to a gallery extension, where simple gray concrete walls and modern interiors offer artists a platform to showcase their work and connect with people.
This hub for contemporary creatives houses a concept store, crate concept and a crate lounge. Past exhibitions at the Crate Gallery include Rik Lee’s illustration show Some Girls, Yasmin Suteja’s Brooklyn On Filmexhibit and Steve Marlon’s Ax exhibition of minimalist tattoo work.
Crate Gallery is located at Jl. Canggu Padang Linjong, Canggu, p. +62 812 3894 3040. Open daily from 6am to 5pm.
Nyaman Gallery, in the heart of Seminyak, has been an elegant and comfortable home for emerging contemporary artists from Bali for the past six years. Step inside and be greeted by a wonderful selection of primitive Indonesian art and décor alongside featured artists including Australian graphic artist YOKII, street artist QUINT and illustrator BunnyBone.
The friendly gallery team is happy to answer any questions and don’t miss the exotic Balinese sculptures on display on the second floor. They are currently expanding their space to accommodate creative workshops and more exhibition space, so stay tuned for more.
The Nyaman Gallery is located at Jl. Basangkasa No.88, Seminyak, p. +62 823 40319860. Open daily from 9am to 9pm.
Tonyraka Contemporary and Modern Art
Founded in 1968 as Raka Gallery by former woodcarver AA Gede Raka Wurayuda, the name changed in 1997 when his son AA Bagus Tony Hartawan took over the reins. TonyRaka is now a cultural platform mainly representing Indonesian artists such as I Made Wiradana, Eddie Hara and Ketut Susena as the growth of the local art scene continues to be the focus.
In addition to exhibitions such as The Choreography of Cutting; TONYRAKA, a solo show by Sally Smart, has also participated in major art exhibitions such as Art Stage Jakarta in 2017 and Singapore Contemporary Art Show in 2016.
TONYRAKA Contemporary and Modern Art is located at Jl. Raya Mas No.86 Mas Kedewatan, Ubud, p. +62 898 0780006. Open Mon-Thu 9am-5pm, Fri-Sun 9am-8pm.
The slow gallery
Not only is this island-chic spot known for its 12 luxe suites, chef Robbin Holgrem’s restaurant, and its proximity to local pubs and Echo Beach, The Slow is currently one of the most hyped gallery spaces in Bali.
This is largely due to the private collection of artwork by artists like Chris Searl, Kate Bellm, and Roman Kimin Yang lining the walls of the restaurant and the spaces available for event and exhibition bookings.
The Slow is located at Jl. Pantai Batu Bolong No. 97, Canggu, p. +62 811 3899009.
Sudakara art space
Sanur’s art scene was enriched by creative hubs and casual galleries like Rumah Sanur and Ghostbird + Swoon, but then there was the Sudakara Art Space.
Tucked away amidst suites and villas in the beautiful Sudamala complex, Sudakara is no stranger to controversial issues such as gender, identity, sexuality and violence, which is evident in feminist artist I Gusti Ayu Kadek Murniasih’s celebration. Sudakara Art Space also works closely with the Ketemu Project, a visual arts collective and social enterprise hybrid based in Bali and Singapore.
Sudakara Art Space is located at Jl. Sudalama No. 20, Sanur, p. +62 361 288555. Open daily from 7am to 11pm.
Studio Eksotika is a six-seat audiophile bar inspired by the dimly lit listening spots of Tokyo’s back alleys and basements, playing tunes ranging from 70’s Indonesian disco and psych to Japanese jazz and new age.
They also host stunning contemporary art exhibitions by emerging artists from around the world, such as the Bujang Rimba premier art exhibition, a fundraising art exhibition for Lombok, and a presentation of Lucas and Sons handcrafted surfboards during RESIN FOUNDRY. The best part? Studio Eksotika never separates music from art, so expect cool music concerts with DJs on hand at every exhibition opening.
Studio Eksotika is located at AT Jl. Petitenget No. 51, Seminyak, p. +62 361 4737979. Open daily from 9am to 6pm.
Curated by Arya Waworuntu, this mobile art gallery pops up across Bali to showcase the work of local and international artists.
The Spacecraft Gallery, which hosts exhibitions everywhere from the skate bowl restaurant Loco by Nature to the jungles of Ubud at FLOCK, has featured artists such as Australian artist Rowan E Cassidy, Isabell Fürbaß (aka Hyper Bunny) and the Bali-based Ijal Mariachi have collaborated to bring to life exhibitions that explore concepts of psychology, mythology and all forms of identity through stunning visual art. You should keep an eye on these.
Spacecraft Gallery’s mobile gallery can be found on their website. Browsing the studio is only available by appointment on +62 812 3936 4408.
This article was first published in City Nomads.