Mumbai exhibition compares women’s plight to environmental destruction

  • Riddhi Doshi, Hindustan Times, Mumbai
  • Updated: May 21, 2016 10:07 IST
In the work I don’t bleed blue, artist Saviya Lopez ridicules advertiser’s practice of showing blue instead of red on sanitary napkins.

An image of bright red lipstick looks glamorous on a plain white paper. On the other side, hangs another paper with a similar image, but in blue.

“A lipstick image is considered top fashion and wow! but a similar image on pants is gross, eew!,” says artist Saviya Lopez, 22. The young artist questions this contradiction through her works as part of an art exhibition titled River with a thousand holes.

In the exhibition, five women artists address issues concerning the plight of women and deterioration of the environment, says co-curator Zasha Colah. Drawing parallels across works, Colah says the exhibition’s theme is eco-feminism.

Partition, by Sucheta Ghadge talks about drawing artificial partitions in rivers and forest lands for the benefit of humans.

“A branch of feminism that co-relates devastation of environment with policies against women,” says Colah. For instance, Saviya in one of her works charts her Mumbai-based mother’s life and the fact that she has no time to pursue her passions and hobbies. “While fulfilling the needs of urban living my mother and other women in city hardly have any time left for themselves.”

In the work I don’t bleed blue, artist Saviya Lopez ridicules advertiser’s practice of showing blue instead of red on sanitary napkins.

Then there is Kumari Ranjeeta, 30, whose works talk of farmlands getting destroyed to make room for concrete jungles, and the plight of farmers and their families who work as construction labourers on the same site.

Landscape, by Kumari Ranjeeta - The bricks made of jowar, bajri, mustard seeds and cement indicate how more and more farm lands are turned into concrete jungles and in the process, the production of local Indian seeds is dwindling, posing a threat to its extinction.

Artist Maria-Maika Koeing, 54, highlights the plight of those women who fled from Turkey during the population exchange between Greece and Turkey in 1923, where about 2 million people were forced to be refugees. “My works also deal with subjects such as marriage and how a woman is boxed into the roles of a wife, a mother and a homemaker,” says Koeing.

Man’s gift but fire - the miniature images talks of the confinement of women to the roles of a wife and a nurturer. Maria-Maika Koeing sticks lace borders around all her frames. These borders belong to Greek women in Turkey, who fled the latter to live in Greece in 1923, during the ‘population exchange’ between two countries.

Sucheta Ghadge, 30, and Shernavaz Colah, 59, art deals with destruction of the environment and highlight building of boundaries around nature, whether in rivers or forest lands.

Monkeys in Khandala, by Shernavaz is an ink drawing is inspired by an incident that the artist witnessed – she saw people in the hill station trying to shoo away monkeys. Through this, she tells viewers that we are the intruders in their territory and that they should not be ousted from their home.

WHERE: Clark House Initiative, Clark House, Nathalal Parekh Marg, Colaba

WHEN: Until June 5, 11 am to 7 pm. Closed on Monday

CALL: 98198-43334


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