Installation Shot, Various Artists, Courtesy of Gallery Ark
While it can be argued that ‘art’ in its myriad contemporary forms may not necessarily be recognised or appreciated across diverse social and economic cultures, pottery however has the undeniable recognition of being fundamental to human life for thousands of years in every civilisation that has emerged on earth. An artist choosing to work with ceramics and pottery today therefore has a plethora of histories to draw knowledge from and extend them further through their own personalised techniques and practices. Elements in Mythology brings together the worlds of some of India’s finest artists working with ceramics presenting examples of both functional pottery as well as sculptural objects. The group show exhibits the works of Ira Chaudhuri, Jyotsana Bhatt, Madhvi Subrahmanian, Reyaz Badaruddin, Savia Mahajan, Vineet Kacker and Vinod Daroz.
Myth Mandalas, Installation shot, Vineet Kacker. Courtesy of Gallery Ark
Elements in Mythology is Gallery Ark’s eleventh show and is a part of the gallery’s broader vision to create a dynamic, state of the art space to promote contemporary Indian art in the heart of Vadodara. In keeping with the gallery’s fresh approach to curation, this exhibition has been conceptualised to bring together a varied range of artistic expressions, from the work of senior artists such as Jyotsna Bhatt and Ira Chaudhuri, who have been integral in spearheading the evolution of ceramics in the Faculty of Fine Arts at M.S. University of Baroda, to the Mumbai-based Savia Mahajan, whose in-depth and experimental approach to ceramics has won her international acclaim.
Ira Chaudhuri 5, Courtesy of Gallery Ark
Storytelling and myths form a vital part of the spirit of the exhibition with each artist presenting a new approach to the timeless human instinct of sharing narratives. Madhvi Subrahmanian, for example, has created personalised Mappa Mundi, referencing the ancient technique of mapping from medieval Europe to create her own “maps” that chart her travels between Mumbai and Singapore, the two cities that she calls home. Architect turned ceramic artist, Vineet Kacker presents a series that references spiritual thought, sampling and remixing old texts, icons and imagery into new visual works that are accessible without being populist, and symbolic without being derivative.
The exhibition will be on view till 18 January 2020.
Background: Jyotsna Bhatt, Foreground: Ira Chaudhuri. Courtesy of Gallery Ark