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Steel Sentiments

With its current exhibition,The Stainless,revisits the theme of the Nayika. The eight Indian deities that are said to be the personification of illicit love have been immortalised in steel by the eight women whose work comprise the show “Ashtanayika — Messengers of Love”.

With its current exhibition,The Stainless,revisits the theme of the Nayika. The eight Indian deities that are said to be the personification of illicit love have been immortalised in steel by the eight women whose work comprise the show “Ashtanayika — Messengers of Love”. “The nayika performing in the show were asked to interact with stainless steel,to emote and react,creating art objects in this dynamic and evolving process,” says curator Alka Pande,as she describes the conceptualisation of the show. The thought-process that followed had each artist interpret the theme in a diverse manner. So if in the book-shaped steel installation Yajur Veda,Seema Kohli has inscribed a Sanskrit scripture and has water flowing beneath,in another work Life is Like That,she ponders over the different layers of a persona. “The naked eye is not privy to the gamut of emotions that lies latent inside one,” notes Kohli.

If in Permanence of Memory Gopika Chowfla “monumentalises the sentimentality of love” through love letters inside steel envelopes,in Love Bath she places a female nude in a cylinder,with heart-shaped paper cuttings flying around it in the electro-mechanical installation. In her series “the unknown ideal — silence” Remen Chopra too carves the body of a woman to narrate “female intricacy by using the emotional content of the body as an understanding of social complexes and cultural stratification.”

Shanthi Swaroopini,on the other hand,ponders how clothing could be protective as well as provocative. There is merging of the mediums too. S. Ayesha has a collage on steel plates and Manisha Bhattacharya brings together ceramic and steel in an attempt to showcase how the opposites,yin and yang,dissolve. “Steel is known for its strength,clay has the malleability to seep through any form effortlessly. Brought together,they throw open exciting possibilities of creating collaborative forms,” states Bhattacharya. The outcome of the merger is in the gallery for review.

The exhibition is on till September 18

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First published on: 08-09-2009 at 12:42:35 am
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