Moving images

GETTING ITS DUE An image from four-channel video project “Julus” by Shakuntala Kulkarni  

Video art works often feature in solos, group shows, fairs and festivals but it has been sometime since we have had an entire show dedicated to the medium. In early 2000s, Apeejay Media Gallery (now reborn) helmed by Pooja Sood (now director of Khoj) was one of the first few spaces to host video art shows.

‘Enactments and each passing day’, an exhibition of just video art works, is taking place after a long time. The excitement around it is obvious. It also becomes a first ever video art exhibition for Kiran Nadar Museum of Art (KNMA) which has a large collection of video works.

Curated by Roobina Karode and Akansha Rastogi, it is presented conceptually as a choreography of scenes, actions, stagings, sites and journeys by 15 contemporary artists from different generations. It unfolds in loops of various enactments in the form of single-channel and multiple-channel videos, video sculptures and large video installations.

The museum appears like a black box where the visitor discovers these moving images onto the ceiling, the floor and everywhere. Archana Hande has created a well-like structure. For the viewer to be able to see the Mumbai-based artist’s work dealing with nomadism, economic relations and loss of cultural identity, one needs to step onto the platform and look into the well. "It is like a video sculpture. Shilpa Gupta’s work is very architectural. It is being projected on to the ceiling," says Akansha.

The works on display are a mix of old and recent works culled from KNMA’s collection and newly created works by artists.

One of the most senior artists to feature in the show is Ranbir Kaleka who is known for experimenting with this medium. In ‘Man Threading a Needle’ (1998-99), an oil painting on board, a man threading a needle sits on an easel. The painting is spot lit. Trying to thread the needle, he occasionally gulps or blinks. He reacts to his surrounding sounds like the police siren, the passing train. The artist has projected a video of the man threading a needle on the painting of the same.

Another senior artist in the show is Vivan Sundaram whose video ‘Black Gold’ is based on his installation done in the 2012 edition of Kochi-Muziris Biennale in which thousands of discarded local potsherds from the Pattanam archaeological site formed the imaginary port city of Muziris.

But how to get a visitor with no understanding of art to an exhibition which comprises content bordering on the ambiguous? "Firstly, with the arrival of social media, we have come to understand the moving image very well. Secondly, the everydayness of these videos is such that it will strike a chord with the viewer. In Bani Abidi’s video ‘Mangoes’, when two women (one Pakistani, the other Indian) eat mangoes recalling their childhood, you feel like eating one too," explains Akansha.

Other artists who are part of the show are Gigi Scaria, Sheba Chhachhi, Shakuntala Kulkarni, Paribartana Mohanty, Sonia Khurana, Rohini Devasher, Hitain Patel, Pratul Dash.

(The show will be open from September 10 to December 8, 2016, at KNMA-Noida, Plot 3A, Sector 126, Noida)

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Printable version | Jan 28, 2022 12:27:23 AM |

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