Words like ‘enemy’, ‘murder’, ‘killed’, ‘police’, ‘fire’, ‘suicide bombs’, ‘war’, ‘threat’, ‘protest’ were scattered all over the canvas. Disparate images of businessmen, politicians, film stars, sages, sports personalities and armed militia- all indicative of the varied hues of masculinity, were strewn around. There were also the wads of greenback, liquor bottles and fenced borders etc., symbolising power in a patriarchal society.
Beneath were the red-coloured words written large: ‘No woman, no cry’. The words were taken out from the lyrics of Bob Marley’s famous song with the same words, meaning that the trigger-happy men could lead a happy life when the last woman is dead.
Ahead of the International Women’s Day, artist B. Kirankumari sought to present the falling child sex ratio in India in the form of a collage. The art work envisages a world without women, with a cheeky remark to men to be happy when no woman is left in the world. The world is portrayed as turning violent, marked by the savagery of men shown in myriad ways in the absence of women, the personification of compassion and love. “With the national child sex ratio touching an abysmal 914 girls to every 1,000 boys as per 2011 census, it is a grave indication that all’s not well and hence I thought of focusing on this topic,” she told this correspondent. Though changing the mindset is the solution, the present generation is lost beyond salvage and it is through the younger generation that we have to carry forward the message, opined the artist, who has presented several thematic works at the national level.
The other works dotting her studio are related to domestic violence, child marriage leading to early signs of ageing, control of mobility in a male-dominated society, workplace harassment, Mathamma system and the plight of women workers in the unorganised sector.
The collage shows a world without women which in turn becomes violent and savage