Roby Dwi Antono - 20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale in association with Yongle Hong Kong Tuesday, November 29, 2022 | Phillips
  • “I would often say that my works contain a set of idioms which have very personal meanings to me. However, at the same time, I also challenge myself to be able to create works that can make people’s emotions arise. I leave some visual cues in my works which act as a melancholic conundrum, for my audiences to set their eyes and mind upon. I love it when people try to guess the message behind my works and in the end each person will have their own interpretation”
    Roby Dwi Antono


    Roby Dwi Antono’s surreal canvases are populated by mystical characters situated in dream-like settings, stemming from the very depths of the artist’s vivid imagination. The present painting depicts his signature protagonist: a wide-eyed semi-human whose depiction recalls the works of Pop surrealists. Emerging from a pond, the creature holds a luminous sphere which vaguely resembles a skull, mirroring both the dusky, eerie skills on either side of them as well as the luminous moon which illuminates the composition from the top right. Partially visible behind lush, thick vegetation, an owl-like bird glimmers in the darkness, overseeing the theatrical scene.  


    Hieronymous Bosch, The Visions of Tondal, 1479

    Collection of the Museo Lazaro Galdiano, Madrid


    Antono’s work is frequently compared to that of artists like Yoshitomo Nara, Mark Ryden and Marion Peck, for his surreal representations of childlike figures with large eyes and contrite expressions, and for his dreamy, fantastical landscapes and hazy settings. His mixture of macabre humour and classic Renaissance aesthetics also calls to mind the bizarre canvases of the Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch (1453–1516). Mystic Moonlight, in particular, presents several commonalities with The Visions of Tondal (1479): both paintings are characterised by ghostly, other-worldly settings, and are populated by subjects immersed in water, skulls, as well as undefinable white spheres, owls, and amphibia.

    Antono was born in 1990. He lives and works in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. A self-taught painter, illustrator and sculptor, the Javanese artist studied graphic design with a publishing focus, and is now highly acclaimed worldwide for his impressive, enthralling painting style. Among his most recent exhibitions are the solo shows Samantha at Anat Ebgi, Los Angeles (29 October 2022–10 December 2022) and The Wall at Almine Rech in Brussels (27 October–3 December 2022).

    In 2022, AllRightsReserved collaborated with the artist to release a limited edition sculpture titled Mystique Moonlight Lamp, of the same starry-eyed character as in the present work.



    Mystique Moonlight Lamp produced by Roby Dwi Antono in collaboration with AllRightsReserved, release as an edition of 250 in 2022.

    • Provenance

      Modern Eden Gallery, San Francisco
      Acquired from the above by the present owner

    • Exhibited

      San Francisco, Modern Eden Gallery, Midnight Garden, 24 October – 13 November 2020


Mystique Moonlight

signed and dated 'Roby da 2020' on the reverse
oil on canvas
49.7 x 50.1 cm. (19 5/8 x 19 3/4 in.)
Painted in 2020.

Full Cataloguing

HK$180,000 - 280,000 

Sold for HK$504,000

Contact Specialist

Danielle So
Specialist, Head of Day Sale
+852 2318 2027

20th Century & Contemporary Art & Design Day Sale in association with Yongle

Hong Kong Auction 30 November 2022