Protest Canvas

Protest Canvas

Artists,designers and performers will join hands for Resist,an upcoming show that aims at creating awareness about gender violence.

SHE is dressed in a black-and-white frilly gown by designers Gauri and Nainika Karan,even though her surroundings hardly hint at an elaborate evening do. The model lies on a bed with fake carcasses suspended from the ceiling on one side and a bare white altar on the other. Dramatic as it is,this is no theme shoot or a film scene. The model is part of a live installation by artist Puneet Kaushik in collaboration with the Karan sisters. The work is one of many that are part of Resist,a temporal art intervention and protest that has brought together artists,musicians and fashion designers to channel their dissent against gender-based violence and injustice. With successfully-concluded editions in Delhi and Chennai,Resist’s Mumbai chapter will be unveiled at Gallery Beyond on May 17.

Myna Mukherjee,curator and Director of Gallery Engendered Space,New Delhi,has conceptualised the event that aims at revealing,subverting,and looking beyond conventional boundaries of aesthetics,through both alternative-underground and mainstream art work. “In the aftermath of the December 2012 rape in Delhi,we wanted our art to instigate and provoke reactions. The goal was to create an experience where the audience would become an integrated part of the ‘live’ installation,” she says,adding that Resist also speaks against gender discrimination.

Fashion has also turned into a political tool for this show. There will be a total of four installations at the Mumbai show,which will be on till May 21. While one is the creation by the Karan sisters,Manish Arora’s ensemble forms part of another. There’s also an installation called Painted and Dented,an allusion to the notorious remark by Abhijit Mukherjee,son of President Pranab Mukherjee. For the installation Gender in the Blender,designers Kallol Datta and Arjun Saluja’s outfits are being juxtaposed with Balbir Krishan’s art work. “This work references the myth of Hari Hara,an offspring of two male Hindu deities Shiva and Vishnu in the female avatar of Mohini. The work thus talks about plurality and gender fluidity in ancient mythology and Indian culture,” says Mukherjee.

The curated part of the event will have works by artists such as Anjolie Ela Menon,Arpana Caur,Alex Davis,Ram Rahman and Satyakam Saha among others. Screenwriter Javed Akhtar will inaugurate the show with a poetry session and Delhi-based bands Space and Desi Headquarters will also perform gigs. The non-curated segment will feature The Wall of Solidarity,an ongoing piece of work where trained and untrained artists can create artwork on 1×1 feet canvases. Vibhuraj Kapoor,director,Gallery Beyond,hopes that the event will challenge people to rethink traditional boundaries. “It is an attempt to focus change in attitude and politics,” he says.