Placed in one of the rooms at Exhibit 320 gallery, Delhi-based artist Ayesha Singh’s Hybrid Drawings (pictured), a nine-ft tall installation made using wrought iron, bears a strong resemblance to the metal gates of grand bungalows in Lutyen’s Delhi. The hybrid forms of architecture bring out the essence of the city — while one of the many gates is dome-shaped, reminiscent of the Lodhi Tomb, another resembles the Corinthian columns of the circular alleys of Connaught Place.
Singh’s installation is one of the 16 works that are part of the exhibition “As You Can See”, which looks at conceptual art in South Asia.
Curator Meenakshi Thirukode says, “Singh works around with the concept of post-colonial and minor architecture. Her works reveal how several houses in the Capital are inspired by European architecture, while others use Mughal architecture.”
Comprising site-specific and mixed media installations, sculptures, floor pieces and drawings, the exhibition makes an attempt to introduce the larger audience to conceptual art, that emerged as a movement in the 1960s, where the idea and concept behind the work is more important than the finished art work. Says Thirukode, “Conceptual art encompasses strategies to think through certain ideas and to talk about politics, social issues and what affects the artist, their line of thinking and how they experience the world.”
While Delhi-based artist UBIK’s work showcases how red oxide can be used in various forms, Kumaresan Selvaraj’s two rod-like sculptures serve as an entry point to the show. “It is an expression of how we have layers of experiences, from childhood to adulthood. The two materials expressing weightlessness and heaviness, prompt internal questioning,” says Thirukode.