Ifa was born in Yogyakarta in 1979. He grew up in a small village and enjoyed soccer in his youth; first playing with a Muhammadiyah-sponsored team, he was a reserve in junior high school. After high school, where he dabbled in basketball and playing the bass, he enrolled at the Indonesian Institute of the Arts.
In 2001, Ifa founded the independent film community Fourcolors Films; the following year, he released his first short film, Air Mata Surga (Heaven’s Tears), together with Eddie Cahyono. Mayar, also released in 2002, which was shown in several film festivals, including International Film Festival Rotterdam.
Four years later, Ifa released Harap Tenang, Ada Ujian! (Please Be Quiet, There are Tests!), a short film about the 2006 FIFA World Cup in comparison with the May 2006 Java earthquake, which was screened in film festivals in Indonesia, Japan, Kazakhstan, and Indonesia. The same year he received a scholarship to study film at Im Kwon Taek Film School in Dongseo… read more