Saturday, August 17, 2013

‘Barbed Floss’ at The Guild India

Curated by Veeranganakumari Solanki, ‘Barbed Floss’ at The Guild India, comprises works by Tayeba Begum Lipi, Mahbubur Rahman, Promotesh Das Pulak, Molla Sagar and Anisuzzaman Sohel. Elaborating on the theme, a curatorial essay states: “Borders on land are made up of barbed wire fencing and high walls, extreme military security, extreme emotional insecurity. The word floss behaves as a thorough cleanser with a fine thread, which removes, cleanses and frees blockages.”

The borders in the sub-continent were drawn with the first partition of 1947. In 1971, after the second partition and Bangladesh’s independence, the non-permeable Indo-Bangladeshi barrier was created. This barbed fence wire is considered to be the fifth longest border in the world. Ethnicities, communities, houses were all partitioned and allotted different nationalities, depending on which side of the political borders they fell.

‘Barbed Floss’ conjures the anti-thesis of these two aspects, contradicting and creating new notions associated with these two terms. The border between India and Bangladesh has a 3,406 km. barbed wire fence that was recently completed to prevent immigration. These borders between countries are implied by and to people where issues of understanding, conversation and migration are discussed in view of relationships, nature, exchange and employment. The river water changes territory, and the waters drift through undisputed; raw elements pass in and out while the barbed winds floss the skies overhead.

In a new exhibition at The Guild India, five artists of Bangladeshi origin explore issues of space, borders, territory, medium, politics and disputed solutions. Each artist has a strong individual reflection of issues related to the notion of ‘Barbed Floss’ and express it through their use of medium and renewed association with their personal experiences, histories and country.

Veeranganakumari Solanki is an independent curator and art-writer; based in Mumbai, India. She studied English Literature; and holds post-graduate diplomas in Indian Aesthetics; Art Criticism and Theory; as well as a Masters in History. Her curatorial experience has involved research, curating and writing for several art publications and journals on emerging Indian, Asian and international artists and art practices; in India as well as internationally.

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