For these paintings, the artists have transposed different mediums. The work started as a dance-video piece with multimedia elements like painting and video. Some of the elements were then subtracted and later, painting and new imagery were added onto the prints. The series is called OK, to show how most often when one says that something is OK, it comes out as a way of almost dismissing or accepting situations. These works encompass some of the combined personal impressions of the artists, about Kerala, which are both humorous and serious. The miniature painting has also been contemporized through colour, form and content.
Where does this search end?
This endless chasing after pleasure
This hustle to make sense of life
To make it matter somehow?
All those lands we seized, all those
Castles built, all those dreams -
Where do they go from here?
Did you know we were all put here
With creels on our backs
To sow and reap manifold?
Only, this search gleans nothing
And one day, with those barren wicker baskets
We shall all sail into a world away -
Those lands, castles and dreams still
Suspended over heads
Not ours anymore.
How beautiful, have you ever thought,
Would it have been, if
What hung over our heads and
What hung deep within
Came together as one?
— Poem by Lidiya Prasad, Kochi, July 2018.
A mapmaker’s grid.
Disturbed by cracks like tree branches.
Or something microscopic.
The edge of the land at the sea.
The blue of time.
We are all holding a boat against the receding tide until it can sit secure for a while on temporary land.
The mapmaker’s grid: we think it marks space with latitude and longitude.
Each cross of lines is a sure place where the sailor-child can feel less fear in the fluidity and apparent emptiness of the sea.
Longitude marks from east to west, by the way.
We are that fragile.
We think it marks real space.
But on top of all that, beside all that, inside all that, the grid marks time.
It connects time to the ground we stand on. Imagine the feet of the boatman on the sand as the water pulls around them, guided by feet and ankles, pulling sand back out to sea.
That pocket of rushing sand and water is caused by those feet being there.
We are each our own little vortex.
The time part is like that. So we make time and it worries us all the same.
The grid calms us like a rhythm or a beat.
We can hold to it and veer from it.
Dance, they call that.
The instant comes and goes.
Here and there, over and over (with variations).
Then and now and the next, over and over (with variations).
This video piece, with its grid and gestures, is like a lullaby.
A song for the children for when they must sleep.
For when they must forget the learning of the grid for a while to let a new day come.
— Text by Andrew Forster, Montreal, July 2018.
Either cultural, religious, social or ethnic, the world is full of diversities. These diversities
make life interesting, beautiful and conflicting, all at once.
So is it actually possible to coexist without conflict? When we reside in a world comprised of people from different religions, nations, cultures, there are bound to be a few points of opposing interests. How then, are we expected to live up to a standard of perfectly peaceful coexistence? Religious intolerance and mob lynching are the major challenges for peaceful co-existence.
These works are the artist’s contemplation and reflection on such questions. Through her
personal experiences and community interactions, the artists believes that peaceful
coexistence can be possible through honest acceptance and respect for different faiths, ideas,
cultures, religions and ethnicities. Art is a powerful tool to evoke social change. Without
uttering a single word, artists can enlighten, educate and affect change around the world.
Although it seems impossible and unrealistic to achieve peaceful coexistence, we can
certainly strive to improve our condition.
In India, the artist witnessed the significance of various traditional art forms and their deep impact on all walks of life. Her idea for this project was to make the socio-cultural knitting of Indian culture stronger, and to bring communal and religious harmony and openness by using classical art elements, and forms with artistic approach of modern and contemporary art.
The core concept of “United Diversities” is based on the diversity of various human races, and their co-existence. She has used traditional Phad & Pichwai paintings of Rajasthan and its iconography, symbolism with modern and contemporary art techniques. She has carried out extensive experiments with forms, colors and compositions with modern art techniques. The artist has used classical matrix composition of pichwai traditional art and motifs of different trees and people of different human races in phad painting style.
Through the set of different artworks she tried to bring to light the concept of“Trees of life,”which advocates co-existence and co-operation in life. A garden or forest is a place where all vegetation and animals grows without conflict or clashes and creates a serene landscape of beauty and peace. In traditional pichwai paintings of Rajasthan they also depict vanchari pichwai or Jungle pichwai.
Other artworks “Bai SA” & “Banna SA” are the face of the traditional culture and lifestyle of people of Rajasthan, whereas artwork “Boshi” and “Marie” represent the modern face of contemporary India. The existence of both lifestyles at the same time in same land is the perfect example of cultural harmony and co-existence.
The artwork “United diversities” symbolize the unity of people from across nationalities, and their co-existence. These works portray different people and their national costumes which give them a unique cultural identity. These paintings contain people from India, Korea, Belarus, Poland, Kyrgyzstan, Arab Emirates, Japan, Africa, Mexico, Georgia, Peru, Australia and Russia.
Artists: All three artists names to be updated under list of artists and their names to be linked to their exhibition page