I Ketut Madra

I Ketut Madra

Jalan Bima, Banjar Kalah, Peliatan, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia
Contact: I Made Berata, berataoffice@gmail.com, WhatsApp: +62 812 39561165

Biographical background

Born in Pengosekan in October 1940, Ketut Madra began painting in the 1950s. His early training included lessons from the Dutch artist Rudolf Bonnet in Ubud and with his cousin I Dewa Putu Sugi of Pengosekan. Early work focused on market and rice field scenes of the European-influenced painting style of the time. After starting to paint in the wayang style, Madra studied with Tjokorda Oka Gambir of Peliatan. At age 18, he moved to Peliatan and soon began focusing exclusively on wayang art; he has painted in that style ever since.

In 1995 he was artist-in-residence in the United States, teaching wayang painting and dance at the University of Wisconsin, River Falls. His work is in museum and private collections in Indonesia, and in private collections in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. It is also displayed in village and family temples in Peliatan and Pengosekan and in other public spaces in Bali.


1974 – “Legendary Paintings of Bali,” Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University, USA

1974 – “Festival of the Great Religious Cultures,” Sakowitz, Houston, Texas, USA

1974 – “Legendary Paintings of Bali,” Fitchburg Art Museum, USA

1975 – Exhibition of Indonesian Balinese Art, Kuring-gai College, Lindfield, N.S.W., Australia 1975 – “Bali: Continuity and Change,” Peabody Museum, Harvard University, USA

1976 – “Century Exhibition,” President’s Palace and Fine Art Institution, Taman Fatahillah Jakarta.
1978 – “Traditional Paintings of Pacific Culture,” Pacific Asia Museum, Pasadena, California, USA 1980-1990 – Active role in annual Bali Arts Festival

1991 – Bali Expo Exhibition, Japan
1992-1999 – Active role in annual Bali Arts Festival

1995 – “Traditional Balinese Painting,” University of Wisconsin, River Falls, USA

1999 – Fine Art Exhibition, Okinawa, Japan

2013 – “Ketut Madra and 100 Years of Balinese Wayang Painting,” Museum Puri Lukisan, Ubud. The exhibition also included work by wayang masters of the Pita Maha.
2016 – “The Storytelling Art of Bali,” Consulate General of Indonesia, New York, NY, USA

Madra was a regular and frequent contributor to the Bali Arts Festival at the Museum Puri Lukisan, Ratna Warta Foundation, Ubud. He also played a long active role in the Pengosekan Community of Artists Exhibition and the Peliatan Artists Community Exhibition.

Traditional Dance

Madra began formal study of traditional Balinese masked dance at 41 with I Ketut Kantor and I Nyoman Bokel of Batuan. He performed regularly at odalan at the Pura Dalem Gde in Peliatan and at temple festivals in Pengosekan and as an invited artist at other nearby villages.

As a member of Peliatan’s Tirta Sari Music and Dance Group, he performed in Japan in 1991 and 1997. Perhaps best known for his portrayals of the “Dalem,” “Topeng Tua,” and comic speaking roles in masked dance, he also played rebab in the Tirta Sari gamelan. He has performed in Jakarta with Tirta Sari as well. He retired from performance in 2017.