Kochi

Powerful art needed to resist superstitions, says Minister

Art of the matter: A visitor at the annual painting and sculpture exhibition organised by the Kerala Lalithakala Akademi at the Durbar Hall Art Gallery in Kochi on Saturday.

Art of the matter: A visitor at the annual painting and sculpture exhibition organised by the Kerala Lalithakala Akademi at the Durbar Hall Art Gallery in Kochi on Saturday.  

‘Attempts being made to negate country’s cultural history’

There is an urgent need to intensify art practices that offer resistance to rising superstitions and unhealthy customs in society, Culture Minister A.K. Balan has said.

“Kerala has become a fertile ground for superstitions, evident from the brisk sale of things such as magical amulets, lucky charms, happening here. Communal forces are out to wipe out scientific thinking. The need of the hour, therefore, is to have powerful art works to resist these things,” Mr. Balan said at an event organised by the Kerala Lalithakala Akademi in which State Awards and Fellowships were presented.

Nationally, attempts were being made to negate the cultural history of the country. That was why there was a need to fill canvasses with plural voices. Art institutions such as the Lalithakala Akademi were organising programmes with that aim, he said.

The government, Mr. Balan said, was contemplating comprehensive legislation to save cinema. “It is an industry that employs several people. Needless controversies will lead to the sector’s doom,” he said.

The government would form a chain of cinema houses in the rural sector to screen quality films. Pension granted to ailing artists had been raised to ₹1,500 and financial assistance from the Cultural Welfare Fund to ₹3,000. Also under consideration was enhancing the cash component of the Akademi awards. Mr. Balan said the government would reinstate as many as nine awards such as the Laurie Baker Award and Padmini Award that had been discontinued.

Akademi chairman T. Sathyapal presided over the event. Akademi fellowships were conferred on artists Achuthan Kudallur and Valsan Koorma Kolleri.

The venue, Durbar Hall Art Gallery, will showcase till September 3 the annual art show held by the Akademi.

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Printable version | Jun 5, 2020 8:45:50 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/powerful-art-needed-to-resist-superstitions-says-minister/article19526408.ece

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