Beatrice de Fays’ work makes the audience a central point of storytelling

Beatrice de Fays or B2Fays as she likes to call herself, doesn’t like her audience remaining passive observers of her work. She likes it when they step forward and become part of the story-telling process. An interactive multimedia installation is the heart of her presentation. Either sides of the large digital screen are flanked by her digital art paintings. The multi-hued images projected on the screen are not reflections of these paintings though.

As you step in front of a sensor, the screen senses your presence and projects a mirror-image on the screen that moves the way you want it to. As you move, images pre-fed into the screen get beamed one after the other, forming a new story. There are images from the streets of Hyderabad, notably the Charminar and a few from mythology (Arjuna on the chariot listening to Krishna). “I choose images according to the city. In Mumbai, I wouldn’t be using these images,” says Beatrice, who will be taking this exhibition to Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore among other cities. She has been visiting Hyderabad over the years to host art exhibitions and says, “I like the energy of Mumbai; but it’s in Hyderabad that I bond well with people and have made a few friends.”

The multimedia presentation ‘Via Presence’ was at Park Hyatt, which also has a vast collection of her paintings. Her new paintings displayed as part of this exhibition, will move to Kalakriti Art Gallery, where they will be on view till April 9. For her paintings, she uses digital prints and sketches on a cloth canvas. The cloth used as the base for the paintings are power-loom cottons sourced from mills, bearing the stamp of the mill, specifics of the material and the business enterprise merchandising the cotton. While the paintings themselves are portraits that borrow from African and Indian sensibilities, the cloth with the stamps narrate their own story. “I like to tell stories through different layers, both through my paintings and the multimedia presentations. The superimposing of images is intentional so that different stories are told and erased as a palimpsest,” she explains.