Puducherry Exhibition runs in top gear, evoking automatic curiosity

Photographs on display on auto rickshaws for the 'Moving Image' exhibition by Pondy ART at the beach Road on Saturday. Photo: T. Singaravelou

Photographs on display on auto rickshaws for the 'Moving Image' exhibition by Pondy ART at the beach Road on Saturday. Photo: T. Singaravelou  


Works of photographers from India, Scotland, Spain, Portugal, France, Germany and Singapore on show

: The approaching twilight is often a good indication for residents to move their vehicles away from the Promenade, as the road turns into a pedestrian-only zone for the evening. Thus the sight of 50 autorickshaws lining up at 5 p.m. piqued the curiosity of bystanders.

Within the next half hour, volunteers and auto drivers mounted posters of rich, vibrant photographs on their vehicles and the stage was set for ‘Moving Image’, an exhibition by Pondy ART. Around 7 p.m., the autorickshaws had dispersed to ride along the streets of Puducherry.

For the next three weeks, these moving pieces of art will go about on their regular trips, and organisers are hoping they reach the furthest corners of Puducherry and are seen by all residents, in keeping with their theme, ‘Getting Art Out There’.

The Pondy ART team consisting of Kasha Vande, Andreas Deffner, Yannick Cormier and K. Muthu, picked photographs from entries across the world, and the exhibition features work of photographers from India, Scotland, Spain, Portugal, France, Australia, Germany and Singapore.

Participants were asked to send in ‘compelling images of India’ that ‘inspire, touch, motivate and affect the viewer in a dynamic way’. The photographs show everyday scenes from across India, including a photograph of Puducherry’s Promenade shot from above.

The idea behind the exhibition was to ‘draw the curiosity of our city’s residents to find out more about photography but also more about their country’, Ms. Vande, creative director, Pondy ART had told The Hindu.

“Everyone gets to see these photographs because they are on our auto rickshaws, even those who cannot read or write. We are helping carry awareness about India’s culture and traditions. My auto rickshaw has a photograph from Rajasthan. One of the beach hawkers identified the people in it and told me they are from his place,” said Pugalarassan, one of the auto drivers for the event.

The participating photographers are thrilled that their work is being seen by a larger audience. “This way it reaches people who would not go to a gallery otherwise. People can consume art without an entry fee. It inspires us to think of new ways of reaching an audience. Next, it could even be on a train or a bus,” said Vishal Kumarasamy from Bengaluru, a participating photographer.

“It is a great concept and there is no better way to bring art to the public. Even if one person is inspired by seeing these images, it will be amazing,” said photographer Kaushal Parikh from Mumbai.

Pondy ART’s previous 14 exhibitions have covered challenges facing India, religious rituals, environmental issues, regions and their tribal communities, and have been organised in public places.

With this latest exhibition, Pondy ART has been able to experiment with venue, material, lighting, scale and presentation, which they have been keen on. The exhibitions, while driving public art, have featured emerging and internationally recognised photographers.

The Hindu is the print media partner for the event.

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Printable version | Jan 29, 2020 11:28:39 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/puducherry-exhibition-runs-in-top-gear-evoking-automatic-curiosity/article6690659.ece

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