Drs. Nugroho: the Inspiring Art Collector

Family Line
Nugroho was born in Mid Java, Solo, in 1943. He is a descendant of a Chinese high society in Surakarta. His father, Mr Go Dhiam Ik, was one of the merchants for the salt trade, while her mother Mrs Tjan Ging Nio, came from a renowned Batik factory.

Due to the hectic schedule of his parents, Nugroho was taken care of by his grandfather from his mother's side, Mr Tjan Khay Sing, who was also a Batik businessman in Solo. He owned four Batik shops; two at Kratonan, another at Ngapenan and the last one at Kestalan with over 1000 employees.

Nugroho has an older brother Go Tik Swan, also known as KRT Hadjonagoro, a pioneer in Indonesian Batik who was a good friend of President Sukarno.

Since he was little, Nugroho usually played with the Batik maker children. Those children would dip the cloth in Malam and wash it. They made brown colour from the Soga trees, and people would make the Batik Tulis cloth with Canting. He also loved to listen to their singing and tell the tale of Dewi Sri, along with other folklore. From them, Nugroho learned the Javanese culture.

True love
After finishing high school in Solo, Nugroho continued to study at ITB (The Technology Institute of Bandung) and took chemistry as his major. Now he is known as Drs.Nugroho. Soon he met his true love. She was a Pharmacist who owned a pharmacy. Together with his wife, they build the Pharmaceutical factory in Bandung.

Becoming a collector
The business was thriving, yet Drs. Nugroho longing for Indonesia’s art keeps on calling. In 1985, when he reached 42 years of age, Drs. Nugroho found a painter whose artwork he loved. The painter was Srihadi Sudarsono, who was also a fine art lecturer at ITB.

From that moment, Drs. Nugroho began to purchase Srihadi’s artworks. His first piece was titled "The Balinese Dancer". The artwork became the cover of Srihadi’s book “Poetry without Words” dedicated solely to Drs.Nugroho’s collection in 2005.

Drs. Nugroho is a unique collector. While other collectors bought paintings from various artists and styles, he was certain of his decision to only collect Srihadi’s artworks. His calculation was correct. It only took a while until Srihadi’s name became one of Indonesia’s prominent artists, which made his creations a great legacy to inherit.

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