Showing posts with label kochi-muziris biennale 2019. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kochi-muziris biennale 2019. Show all posts

Sunday, 13 January 2019

Art is a powerful medium for personal development

Humankind has not still recovered fully from the tentacles of shock, bitterness, and dejection associated with slavery and the slave trade that happened in some parts of the world in the past centuries. When we speak about slavery, the focus suddenly shifts to the African continents; the cruelty, oppression, and suppression encountered by the people over there were unimaginable. However, it is a well-known fact that slavery and slave trade flourished in the shadows of colonization, invasion, and trade deals carried out by the British, Dutch, and others in other parts of the world as well. The horrifying and the most unfortunate aspect of such atrocities was the lack of proper records about this shady trade, the people who controlled it, and the profile of the most unfortunate souls who suddenly found their voices unheard of by anyone.

Human beings were captured, treated cruelly and sold like cheap commodities. Just like animals for slaughter they were chained and carried away to other continents for sale. No one cared for their names, nationality, or ethnicity. They were assigned names by their handlers and, they were supposed to obey their masters whatever the orders might be. They must stop behaving like a fellow human being, instead become an obedient slave following their master unconditionally observing silence.
Just do it!
 Just obey! 
Don't utter a word! 
Ironically, in case they get sold to someone, they must obey the new master. 

Sue Williamson, a very talented and famous artist based at Cape Town in South Africa, through this huge installation is telling us the sad story of such poor souls and the acts of cruelty these humans suffered at the hands of their own fellow men. If you go through the unspeakable acts of savagery and brutality during the period of the slave trade it will make you horrified. The installation is made using wood, fishnets, glass bottles, metal, and water. She has inscribed the names of the slaves obtained from the archives from Cape Town on these soil infused bottles trapped inside fishnets through which water gets circulated throughout. The whole bunch is hung from the ceiling and the water flows into the tank built in the ground. These tanks are lined with wooden panels on which the details of the slave trade ships’ itinerary are inscribed. 

This wonderful artwork is titled 'message from the Atlantic passages'. You can view this work at the Aspinwall House in Fort Kochi, which is the primary venue of the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2018 - 2019. Much has been written about this amazing installation that explains the popularity of this artwork and the unique theme it conveys. Oppression, suppression, and slavery in any form are evil which drains the life out of humans making people barbarians. This work subtly radiates the fact that slavery in all forms is bad and it includes modern-day slavery as well.
  • The important aspects of a successful personality are free will, free thinking, and an independent state of existence. Modern-day slavery that is prevalent in many forms will restrict personal development and one must be vigilant not to succumb to it.

She has exhibited one more art here. Please check this post - 

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Friday, 11 January 2019

Art has power: A beautiful video installation in the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2019

Indian soldiers fought fiercely for the British empire during World War II against the Axis powers. World War II resulted in the loss of lives of more than 85,000 Indian soldiers which included those who went missing as well, about 35,000 were wounded and around 80000 were held as prisoners of war. Have we acknowledged the services of these brave men adequately who fought fiercely the bitter wars that the world had fought is a very thought-provoking question. When viewed in a post-colonial, global perspective we cannot ignore the contributions of these brave men who had sacrificed their lives in different parts of the world. Moreover, such historical events should also be kept alive in our memories and must make us feel proud for the contributions of our ancestors without which the Allies would not have won the war against the Axis powers.

Annu Palakunnathu Matthew in her video installation has brought the events of the past into limelight once again. Modern life is progressing at a very fast pace with commercialization, self-centeredness, and narrowed focus being given more importance, and there is a total lack of acknowledgment of some of the events like these that have taken place in the past. But it is the history that shaped the present, which all the more highlights the fact that we cannot simply move forward by completely forgetting the past.

This video installation brings the sacrifice of the Indian soldiers during the Italian campaign of World War II to our attention. This work surely will prompt people to re-visit the history of the British rule in India to find out more about such events that did not get sufficient exposure. This is a beautiful installation that has become very popular among visitors. 

Thank you Annu Palakunnathu Matthew for this wonderful installation😊
  • Art is a powerful medium capable of creating vibes in ourselves. It is thought-provoking, has power, and it is beautiful! Use it for personal development!

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