Thursday, March 25, 2010

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Jitish Kallat at the Haunch of Venison | जितिश कल्लत

The Astronomy of the Subway, 2010

Haunch of Venison, London

Haunch of Venison London presents an exhibition of new work by the Indian artist Jitish Kallat. Kallat's new work showcases the full range of his visual vocabulary incorporating video, sculptural installation, photography and the large format paintings for which he is best known. Tackling his foundational themes of sustenance, survival and mortality in the contemporary urban environment of Mumbai, Kallat offsets a vivid, hand-made aesthetic with digitised renderings of streets fit-to-burst, where the cumulative impression of daily existence is pushed to the extreme.

At the heart of the artists interest in the bustling metropolis lies the experience of the individual within the crowd. This is driven by a play on scale, understood in terms of a subject's physical and metaphorical presence. Across two and three dimensions, using a variety of media, and through assimilating the local with the universal, Kallat checks the twenty-first century's obsession with effects - images, food, products, even people by repositioning them in unfamiliar environments. A large video projection shows x-rayed foodstuffs projected onto a dark celestial space and pouring into view as asteroids, stellar formations, planetary clusters and nebulae. In a sculptural installation, a miniature crowd of rioting figures scatters across the floor, their scale exaggerated by the viewers height, as if seen through the wrong end of a telescope.

Another piece in the exhibition is an intricately treated sculpture of an oversized black lead kerosene stove that carries more than a hundred images on it. These are culled from the porch of the Victoria Terminus building which is the nerve centre of Mumbai's commuter action. Curiously, the decorative architectural friezes carry several images of animals devouring each other and clinging onto various foods. Viewed together on a single sculpture, this sprawling mass is not unlike the daily grind of survival that this porch bears witness to. In large paintings elsewhere, the body is abstracted into ink blot formations, its stretched muscles and dripping fluids becoming receptacles of urban trauma.

Undermining conventional notions of the local and universal, the micro and the macro, and the way the two infect one another, Jitish Kallat's forthcoming exhibition is a sustained meditation on the urban dwelling condition where the struggle between self-improvement and social disorder is at its most stark. The corpus of evidence Kallat presents is bound by Tristan Tzara's Dada poem, 'The Great Lament Of My Obscurity Three', which he re-presents here as a text made from bone. Its combination of the close at hand, the nonsensical and the cosmic -'let us always shuffle through the colour of the world/which looks bluer than the subway and astronomy… our legs are stiff and knock together - distils the world, half-here and half-there, mine yet theirs, which Kallat repeatedly evokes.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Contemplating The Void | Anish Kapoor

There have been five bids for Anish Kapoor’s Ascension (Red), the last for $4,752. Image: © Anish Kapoor

For the fiftieth anniversary of the Frank Lloyd Wright–designed Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum building, the Guggenheim invited some two hundred artists, architects, and designers to imagine their dream interventions in its central rotunda.

Among the artists participating in the exhibition are Alice Aycock, FAKE DESIGN (Ai Weiwei), Anish Kapoor, Sarah Morris, Wangechi Mutu, Paul Pfeiffer, Doris Salcedo, Lawrence Weiner, and Rachel Whiteread; designers such as Fernando and Humberto Campana, Martí Guixé, and Joris Laarman Studio; and architects such as Álvaro Siza Vieira Arquitecto, BIG (Bjarke Ingels Group), Greg Lynn FORM, MVRDV, N55, Snøhetta, Studio Daniel Libeskind, Toyo Ito & Associates, Architects, and West 8.

Contemplating the Void functions as an anniversary fundraiser for the museum—over 90% of the artists have donated their works to this cause. Proceeds from the sale will support the museum's exhibition programming.


Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Love, Sex Aur Dhoka | Handy Cam Movie

Directed by the path breaking Dibakar Banerjee ("Khosla Ka Ghosla", "Oye Lucky! Lucky Oye!") and produced by Balaji Motion Pictures, "LSD Love Sex aur Dhokha" (loosely translated as Love, Sex and Betrayal) is India's premier digital film -- raw, explicit and has cult cross over written all over it

The synopsis for the February 2010 film reads thus, "Love Sex aur Dhokha is a film about voyeurism. It is essentially about how we have become a generation of voyeurs and flashers simultaneously. This film is about keyhole. On one side of the keyhole is a guy who is peeping in and on other side, there is a person who is hoping that someone is peeping in, and then its us, who are seeing all this. And it is adding bizarre subtext to our society. On television, newspapers, other media, we are obsessed with the most meaningless trivia of what other people are doing about their life."

Controversial Trailer

Title Track



Monday, March 8, 2010

Tote Club at the Turf Club | Design Review

If you are in mood to relax in a sophisticated environment & ultra modern space, you should stop by at South Bombay Turf Club's new addition -- Tote Club.

Just last night I was invited by few friends of mine who are members of the elite Turf Club for a private party and I managed to sneak to the Tote Club which is located on the other side of the racecourse.

Tote is designed by Kapil Gupta, a renowned Indian architect and also the principal of architect firm in London. The split level bar with its high ceilings and imposing central staircase, is peppered with a few people over weekdays. Its Bombay's first fine true bar menu that has rich character & made for people with high taste. This is one such place which is defining urban contemporary India.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

South Indian English Video | They Know How to Shake Their Booty

Mad O Wot | The Coolest Indian Salon in Bombay

Channel [V] | Textually Active

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