Of quietude and self-examination amid the ‘new normal’
Reflecting on inner change and the new normal amid the pandemic, 10 artists have come up with their new works. In diverse mediums, ranging from wood and bronze to ink and even acrylic, the artworks are in form of paintings, videos, sculptures and photographs that talk about the sense of quietude and self-examination, which came to fore in the last year. The ongoing group exhibition is therefore aptly titled This & That!
“I had planned this exhibition in 2020. The pre-Covid world was one that was steeped in conflict, depleting us emotionally, especially with the incessant presence of social media. One was visible but not present in the moment,” says Ashna Singh, curator of the show, adding, “Post Covid, 2020 forced corrections upon the world, and we had to move inwards. The lockdown gave us a sense of freedom, allowing us to focus on our priorities by removing the unnecessary and understanding the essentials. Simplicity became important. This exhibition is all about how life has given us a chance to choose between the best of that time and this time.”
During the pandemic, the emotional alienation we go through in spite of technological advancement was brought starkly into view. Talking about how one object replaces the other, TV Santosh, an artist whose bronze sculpture titled Obsolete Objects is on display, says, “Today, we live in a world of use and throw culture. My generation has lived through a period of transition, from the era of the radio to the iPod, revolutionising our approach to listening music. Through my work, I try to re-imagine the things that are now obsolete, but are still very much nostalgia inducing for us, that remind us of a bygone era. Essentially, this show is about addressing how the flux of human experience of both personal and social becomes instrumental in defining the time and history as we know it with its inherent contradictions and complexities.”
Artist Shivani Aggarwal’s sculptural work, Hangers, is also grabbing attention of the viewers. “It is an extension of the series of dysfunctional objects I have been creating for long now. These hangers mimic the times we live in, a time in which anything and everything loses its defined purpose due to situational intervention, whether economic or ecological or man-made,” says Aggarwal, adding, “A simple wooden hanger when pushed beyond its limits changes its shape and purpose to become dysfunctional. Similarly, we all are affected by our situations and circumstances.”
Catch It Live What: This & That Where: Studio Art, W-16, Okhla Phase 2 On till: May 15 Timing: 11am to 7pm Nearest Metro Station: Harkesh Nagar Okhla Metro Station on the Violet Line
Author tweets @bhagat_mallika