Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A review of some significant works at Saatchi show of Indian art

Atul Dodiya’s ‘Woman from Kabul’ (Acrylic and marble dust on fabric) on view at the Saatchi show is a work about living in Afghanistan at the turn of the new millennium. Another work, entitled ‘Portrait Of Niko Pirosmani’ (1862-1918) done in enamel paint on laminate board portrays the Georgian primitivist, who invented a new technique of painting during periods of solitude and poverty.

Subodh Gupta’s ‘Spill’ (Stainless steel and stainless steel utensils) is an overbearing work of great scale that has at its centre a larger than life stainless steel water vessel, with many smaller steel utensils spilling over the edge like water pouring out.

Jaishri Abichandani’s ‘Allah O Akbar’ (Leather whip, wire, paint, swarovski crystals) is created from decorative materials in green and red, such as coloured leather whips and Swarovski crystals.

Dressed in period costume, Pushpamala N refashions these stereotypes to subvert and critique the forensic classification of humanity. The strength of her 'Ethnographic Series' lies in the artist’s will to reconstruct such scenes whilst grappling with the archaic machinery and acting as subject and servant to the camera.

Reclaiming the wreckage of an old dilapidated Xerox machine that appears to have been used to the point of its extinction, artist Sakshi Gupta appears to have prized the shell apart as though a forensic scientist looking over the anatomical organs under the natural light of the operating theatre.

Elevating the machinery off the ground and positioning its integral parts side by side, the artist manages very resourcefully to deliver something quite beautiful back. This recent work demonstrates the artist’s ability to scrutinize reality for opportunities for creativity, even where death and decay appear much more prevalent.

For Chitra Ganesh, the comic book appears to epitomize and perpetuate a perverse sense of good over evil. The stylized simplification of the comic book style is central to her Tales of Amnesia (21 C-prints), in which the audacious female character confronts subscribed notions of compliance in order to explore alternative models of femininity and power.

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