After having seen art exhibitions in museums and galleries built specifically for the purpose, how would it be to see it within the walls of someone’s lived space? If, for example, a one-bedroom house were to host an exhibition, how would it change the viewing experience for visitors, as they walk in through what is someone’s front door, and wend their way through the various rooms, in order to look at the art? Would it make the viewing experience more intimate? These are some of the questions that one is confronted with at a group show titled “Geometries of Desire and Decay”. Featuring the works of young artists and architects from India, Pakistan, China, Singapore, the United Kingdom and Hungary, the exhibition has been organised by authority of small objects, a Delhi-based collaborative project.
Set in a farm in Chhatarpur is the cottage that is currently hosting this unusual exhibition. Visitors walk in across a flower garden to the cottage, which retains signs of occupation, including a fireplace in the bedroom and a chaise-lounge in the living room. The art works — by artists Akai Chew, Farah Mulla, Jie Wang, Lorand Bogos, Mina Arham, Pranay Dutta, Rim Kalsoum and Srinath Iswaran — are displayed throughout the house, including in the bathroom. “We don’t believe that art is something that you can only enjoy in a white cube space, like a gallery. Art is something that you can live with, and we’re showing people how,” says Ribhu Borphukon, Director, authority of small objects. Borphukon, who has partnered with hospitality entrepreneur Rohit Sethi on this project, explains that the whole idea is to make art more accessible.
While authority of small objects will continue to work out of its current space in the Chhatarpur farmhouse and will host its next few exhibitions here, the search for other spaces in Delhi and even outside, will continue. Work is also on to organise an invite-only residency programme in locations across the country. The idea behind authority of small objects’ efforts is also to connect young artists with young collectors. “The works on display are small but they’re diverse in terms of form and medium. The artists are all young and unrepresented, and we do not wish to represent any artist full-time. So the art becomes affordable for younger collectors, who may be interested in beginning a collection but may not want to spend too much,” says Borphukon.
The exhibition at 8 Fern Hill Drive, DLF Chhatarpur Farms, is on till May 5