I am a multidisciplinary artist from Bangalore, studied in MS University. Currently practicing in Bangalore, Karnaraka. My work has developed in number of ways over the years yet from the very beginning of my art practice, I have workded in Painting, Printmaking, Installation, Video Art and Live/ Performance art. My intention is to blend these mediums into an interdisciplinary language.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Post Oil City And Bangalore Gardens Reloaded

Connecting Ideas - Marta Jakimowicz, Feb 3, 2013, DHNS

The dual exhibition “Post-Oil City: The History of the City’s Future” and “Bangalore Gardens Reloaded” was a very interesting event which strove to interactively connect ideas about the metropolitan past and its environmentally relevant solutions for later as well as the often similarly anchored, innovative efforts and inquiry among architects or urban planners and scientists with those of visual artists.

The event enabled by the Institute for Foreign Cultural Relations, Stuttgart in co-operation with ARCH+ and the Max Mueller Bhavan here was part of the German curator Elke Falat’s project to be realised in different countries and continents. It had three parts that evidently and not so evidently added to one another and framed one another. 

The main element that remains the same in diverse locations belongs to the precise charts and drawings presenting innovative, ecology-friendly plans for city buildings, waste managements, transport and such. The several cases for study were brought to the Visvesvaraya Museum (January 18 to February 3) and shown in such a way together with the art works by Bangalore artists as to nearly mingle with the venue’s own scientific display, thus underscoring the linkages of purpose and method behind all the participating agents.  

The artists were asked to “critically react to Post-Oil City in the local context, to develop utopias and question them” considering the recent boom growth of the city that has altered its garden-like character. One may suspect that there perhaps was not enough time for sustained work on the ambitious aim, since the new contributions addressing it directly were infrequent, most addressing the contemporary city phenomenon either in a broader manner relating to a diversity of angles or sourcing from already available work in an akin manner. 

Although the whole was rich and included a number of really good concepts and their visual expressions, the level was not exactly even. Another problem may have been one regarding the accessibility of intended meaning when presented in a public, educatory space. The main hall lined up by cases with urban plans seemed to be held together by its focus on the vast floor installation by Sunoj D, whose multi-seed balls with planting instructions evoked both unnatural farming conditions and a longing to overcome those.

While Ayisha Abraham’s video collage of old home movies conjured a sense of dynamic, vivacious history informing the present and Suresh Jayaram’s quilt hanging paid an emotional homage to the once green city, many artists dealt with difficult issues of Bangalore metamorphosing beyond its capacity. If on a somewhat literal note, Bhavani G D offered a video documentation of lakes depleted of water and Raghu Kondur depicted the dangers of construction labour, Suresh Kumar G resorted to a personal gesture filling an enclosure for vermin-compost with plastic trash. 

Among the best contributions one found Dimple B Shah’s noisy, hard and threatening cubicle of urban claustrophobia and Surekha’s Ragi crop growing from a field of discarded computer keyboards, besides the nostalgic lament for the absence of sparrows by Mangala Anebermath. Two exceptional works delved into subtler but significant changes in the occurring: one being the multimedia installation by Bharathesh G D attuning itself to the emergent connections between people and city grids, objects and materials, the other the text-based questioning of mutating relationships between contrasting notions by Prayas Abhinav. Thinking about the shape of the future, a calamitous outcome was foreseen by a gas-masked Madhu D in his performance photograph against felled trees. Nandesh Shanthi Prakash, nonetheless, chose an optimistic prospect of canvassing for alternative energy in his bicycle-born distribution of bright toy windmills. 

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