With focus on South Asia, in its ninth edition the Indian Art Fair is looking inwards. Here are some must-see works at the event in Delhi:
Taj Mahal is known for its immeasurable grandeur but artist Sudarshan Shetty has created countless miniature reproductions of the historic monument, bolting together to form a monumental block, discussing its transformation from a private gesture to a national symbol and a souvenir.
The first major work of Pakistani-American artist Anila Quayyum to be shown in India, the installation plays with light, with a steel box with elaborate laser cut-outs of floral patterns and geometric motifs as its central structure. When lit from the inside, it casts shadows in the exhibition area.
The global tapestry with a giant world map has multi-coloured wires tracing the movement of migrants across the world. The audio resonates with sounds of high-voltage electric currents, the deep-sea, factory sirens, ship horns and migratory birds. The electric wires symbolise both channels of transmission and fencing.
With this work, the artist duo attempt an “emographic” of the world. Visitors write a memory on a piece of paper, then tick one of the that describes their memory best. They shred the paper and mix it with colours that the duo has assigned to each emotion and prepare a cement tile that is tagged with their name and into a grid. Eventually, there will be a different grids for each city where the work travels.
This project documents an initiative where in March 2014 artists from both sides of the border concentrated on the villages of Bholaganj in India and Puran Bholaganj in Bangladesh. They met each other without any visa. The idea was to discuss the historical and socio-cultural contexts that govern both the countries. A documentation of this project’s execution, including photographs, video and sound art, is being shown at the booth.
No one is without baggage or a past, and it is that past that shapes the present and makes us who we are. This is the premise of the collection exhibited by Vadodara-based Girjesh Kumar Singh. Using waste material collected from sites of demolished buildings, Singh’s choice of medium is unique – bricks, most of which still have the cement attached to them. Each of the sculpted faces – their form and expression dictated by the material itself – have a different story to tell. The collection is named after 16th century poet Kabir’s iconic work of the same name.
India Art Fair 2017 is on till February 5, 3017, at the NSIC Exhibition Grounds, Okhla, Delhi.