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Interim to Now

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Epiphany as Black Humour
Artist as Shaman or Ethnographer or Spectator
Inclusion of Theatre in Art/Performance as provocation

Epiphany as Black humour

Recently, I read the article ‘Tristan de Cunha’ written by Tacita Dean in Artforum, vol 43, no.10 (summer 2005) 275. The artist narrates her imaginary journey to Tristan de Cunha a volcano island amidst the rough Southern Atlantic; a place which is less known to her as she is a urban resident, living in a protected environment. I uncover that her imagination dwells in her childhood stories to her desire to work on a future art project which involves a journey to the remote island where Seafaring people get a secure shelter from rough sea.


The land made of lava (!) where a volcano emerged from the ocean; the island is a place where seafaring people live in harmony without being troubled by their nationality or identity. The place there is no burden in dealing with history or perhaps she indicates the freedom from a regime. Even I can find her that she is contemplating to giving up of her existing identity in all probability she fantasised knowing that in the satellite friendly world it is impossible.


Later from a book Wind, Sand and Stars by Antoine de Saint-Exupery she refers ‘As Saint Exupery walks his untrodden desert plateau, he finds in the sand a black stone, like lava stone, which has fallen from the sky, and the more he wanders the more of them he finds. ‘And here is where my adventure became magical, for in striking foreshortening of time that embraced thousands of years, I had become witness of this miserly rain from the stars. The marvel of marvels was that there on the rounded back of the planet, between this magnetic sheet and those stars, a human consciousness was present in which as in a mirror that rain could be reflected.


In my recent work ‘I am your DODO-BO LAND’ a site specific sculptural installation I intended to transform the burial chamber of a crypt into a refuge of contemplative notion of my psychological state. The work comprises of a sculpture assembled of found objects and Led lights which rotates to six different colors alongside with a digital image projected on the chamber wall.


Prior to making this work I began tracing lists of Flora and fauna of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, its ecology has mostly been centered of my art practice. Meanwhile I learned that the Island group has unique sets of versatile species which could not be found anywhere else on earth. However while I looked into the birds list I discovered, suddenly, that the particular specie name ‘Nicobar Pigeon’ is closely related to a bird called the Dodo which is now extinct !!!




Further readings-


Tristan De Cunha written by Tacita Dean Artforum, vol 43, no.10 (summer 2005)


The history of the Dodo Raphus cuculatus and the penguin of Muaritius by Julian P. Hume


When Languages die The Extinction of World languages and the Erosion of Human Knowledge by K. David Harrison Oxford University Prsee 2007

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Artist as Shaman or Ethnographer or Spectator

In the post-bailout world out of a bleak time, Joseph Beuys started working with anthropological objects and rituals. Perhaps the fantasy of achieving the post-human era has been fabricated with power structure at that time did reach the phenomenal peak.



Beuys who was a former soldier and had experienced the horrific side of warfare started making works of ritual/performances sometimes environmental intervention sometimes in the gallery as an indicator of humanism (intangible) as a social mechanism (achievable tangible). In 1974 ‘I like America and America likes me’ the artist Beuys performed/shared a gallery space with a coyote for three days. The work he presented in a gallery space of spending time with the wild creature (coyote) I register it is a great event in art history that could be seen his work Artist as an Ethnographer thus collector/absorber of intangible situations transferred into tangible moments.


Being in the digital era was growing up with devices my work has varied from studio based practice to device based embracing technology as a new medium of art inquires the barrier between tangible and intangible; it blurs often.



The recent project #unblockyourdream a participatory drawing installation I tried to explore the hidden properties of mundane as memories of a dream (personal/individual) intangible could be seen as a tangible document. Hence, not only I have applied deliberate Freudian experimentation but to investigate how consumerism transfers the intangible into tangibility. My process involved drawing on site by seeking the participation of others, asking to draw their memories of dream, photo-documentation and creating my own personal archive, publishing the individual drawing images on social media site.


Ethnographer does collect the intangibles as tangible data. Michael Billig’s paper Freud and Language of Humour he compares Freud’s work on Dream and Humor both and supports the Freudian theory ‘Jokes like dreams, slips of tongue, bear the traces of repressed desire’.


Further readings- 


Freud and Language of Humour by Micheal Billig

The society of the spectacle by Guy Debord

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Inclusion of theatre in Art/Performance as provocation

Theatre or art performance is both participatory staged/performed, identifies the audience for its individual purpose. Both forms nurture the body and its relation to the site, to the environment and the extended version of reality throughout its practice.


Artist explores visualography within various dimensions as theatre does. Thus demands the participation of outsideness but conveys an insight of hidden elements of emotion. Duchamp’s installation work the ‘Fountain’ is successful and per formative while appears tremendously contradictory within a gallery space. When in postmodern theatre such as Brechtian etc. more and more experimenting, trying to rise above the traditions of detailed scenographic suggestions of Proscenium play and more emphasizing on momentum body centric, gestural, visual grammar.


In my work ‘How to explain Art (Picture) to A Dead Wire (Hare)’ I tried to explore both traditions by making costume, using a makeup (Gold and silver leaf, honey) and props (wire), the action involves gestures, like bending/unknotting/weaving out of the entangled wire while the other my collaborator who is a music practitioner of a single stringed musical instrument ‘Kalumbu’ performed simultaneously using his traditional skills within a gallery space. Both acts is contradictory thus complements each other; situation transfers ‘the intangible’ into a tangible condition within the gallery space yet invites the viewer to participate.



Similarly the use of light in theatre to conduct a visual significance to deliver the emotional or environmental suggestions to convey a conflict/ reflection to the audience I see the use of light as an element/medium in the installation where the controlled environment itself purely transforms into a sited work. The work of Bruce Nauman Changing Light Corridor with Rooms 1971 can be installed in several ways but always consists of a long, walled corridor, about thirty centimetres wide, from which two side rooms (one rectangular, the other triangular) can be reached half-way down. The darkness of the corridor is interrupted intermittently by harsh, flashing streams of light coming from the side rooms. The flashing occurs at a specified rate: in the rectangular room the lights are on for ten seconds, then off for four seconds, and in the triangular room they are on for seven seconds and off for two.


In my recent work, I am your DODOBOLAND the use of lights as indicators of various faze of the artist’s thought. The reflective notion of the psychological state of mind thus the body establishing into the site as crypt's hidden chamber offers a claustrophobic yet passive surface beneath the active. Therefore a sculptural installation paired with a digital projection and sculpture and light rotationally (changing in every half second) transforms a settled but altering site as we shift our thoughts, nurture and return in our subconscious state.


Description of Bruce Nauman’s installation followed by the link below

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