|Chinthaka Thenuwara from Sri-lanka's Massive Table with Chairs|
10 artists from 5 countries create art piece out of industrial scrap
Vijayanagar-Karnataka, December, 2014-
A three week residency programme held at Vijayanagar Karnataka, initiated by JSW Foundation concluded yesterday. Abhisaran as the program was aptly titled converged 10 artists from 5 countries at a venue of great historical and architectural delight- The Vijayanagar Empire and the neighbouring destination Hampi.
The artists who participated in Abhisaran were Baptist Coelho (India), Chinthaka Thenuwara (Sri Lanka), Mahbubur Rahman (Bangladesh), Mrugen Rathod (India), Muzummil Ruheel (Pakistan), Pala Pothupitiya (Sri Lanka), Preksha Tater (India), Seema Nusrat (Pakistan), Sanjeev Mahajan (Nepal) and Sheelasha Rajbhandhari (Nepal). During the three week residency, artists used site-specific material like metal scrap, local pottery, local crafts and material to create works with a variety of mediums that included sculptural installations, dance, video and sound. The Heritage Site of Hampi, the industrial town of Vijayanagar and the arts, crafts and performance practices of Hampi served as an inspiration ground for these artists.
The art works that finally emerged from this three week workshop are awe inspiring. Chinthaka Thenuwara from Sri Lanka conceptualised and created a massive table with chairs. The premise & concept of this installation is that work happens around a table typically. Similarly, the table is where all important discussions happen, a table is where debates can happen, a table is where deals can happen and that formed the inspiration for Chintaka’s work. After collecting nuts and bolts from around the plant for good 4-5 days, he created a kind of cafeteria set up with round table and chairs juxtaposed against a miniature steel plant in the background complete with chimneys and a logo. Industrial scrap was utilised to its best making it absolutely functional.
Indian artist Preksha Tater’s creation resonates the philosophy of Mr O.P Jindal – Founder of the Group. WHERE PEOPLE SAW WALLS, HE SAW DOORS. Using coal and iron from the factory, she created a universal circular shape with a key hole thus making it an art installation at the entrance. Her art piece also reflects the fact that the plant is an open door to experience, enjoy, ideate and learn. Visitors can experience art at unexpected venues and with unpredictable mediums.
Seema Nusrath on the other hand, found her inspiration in the apparel and textile section and created a high mount-up art deco in the centre of the courtyard. Sanjeev Mahajan was inspired by the landscape of Hampi and the JSW Township. Through a workshop with 60 school kids, he got the kids to draw their interpretation of what they saw through the view finder. As the Foundation strongly believes in giving back to society, this workshop for school kids was very well received and the results were astounding. Abhisaran turned out to be a fertile learning ground and stimulated a dialogue in contemporary and performing arts across borders for a new age India. Calligraphy and a book shelf installation were other interpretations by artists at Abhisaran.
Amit Jain, Curator, Abhisaran added: “The three week residency programme with artists joining us from various countries has been extremely fruitful. A thorough creative journey in what we aimed to achieve has finally concluded. Abhisaran can be summed as a never seen before community outreach programme which involved the community members in conceptualising and creating ‘Art’ for the community, by the community and of the community.”
The participating artists got a platform of unprecedented scale and size to express their ideas with around 15000 people at their disposal. Art of such magnitude could have been possible only at a unique location like JSW’s VIjayanagar plant. These art works are for public viewing and will be showcased at Vijayanagar, Karnataka. Few of the works of art are also likely to move to school for the benefit of the school children so they can interact with art too.