Celebrating the feminist spirit through new media

Celebrating the feminist spirit through new media

By OUR CORRESPONDENT | | 20 August, 2016
Untitled digital print by Pratap Morey.

A new exhibition, celebrating the spirit of feminism and conceptualised by Priti Paul, has opened at Apeejay Arts, Apeejay Surrendra group’s premier art centre showcasing high quality experimental work in new media and emerging technologies.

The title of the exhibition, Red Moon Songs, refers to ancient Mother-Goddess rituals, as a form of revival and celebration of the feminine principal. Red is the colour of blood and the moon often guides the cycle of many women. The red moon is also worshipped in some religions. The show is about connecting to the forgotten and often tabooed rituals around the moon the act of bleeding which in fact leads women towards being intuitive and powerful. Extending that further it's also about moving on from gender and tapping into another kind of energy in a contemporary context that cannot be contained or boxed in by gender.

The exhibition curated by Georgina Maddox, features over 45 art pieces by more than 30 artists from India and abroad. They will be showcasing a variety of media starting from paintings, video installations and sculptures to other mixed media work which will be away from the mainstream. The capabilities and in-capabilities of both men and women are shattered and are brought under a single frame.

“Apeejay Arts is giving a platform to some very influential faces of contemporary feminist art through Red Moon Songs. The art pieces question political correctness and outdated social ideologies that oppress half of the world's population and push the limits of feminism,” said Priti Paul, Director, Apeejay Surrendra Group.

The show even includes a few performances for opening night to reach the outmost spectators and to transform their real images into virtual ones. The intention is to underscore not just the end product but the process of searching for one’s place of belonging, the journey being all important as much as the destination that lies ahead.

From protagonists playing with the notion of the masculine-feminine, radicalizing gender to Nirbhaya, acrylic on canvas first conceived during the horrific Nirbhaya rape incident in 2013 and now on display as 12 individual canvases that place strong genderless imagery against the female form that are both an anguished scream and a war-cry.

From a video works that explore vulnerability and sensuality that goes beyond gender stereo-types and the psyche of a woman to ticket stubs, beads, hairpins and various other objects pieced together to construct a fractured self-hood. From larger than life sculpture that foregrounds the more terrifying side of Shakti, through the spear-like hair pins to a Mixed Media Installation that is a drawing and stitching on silk depicting personal relationships, conflict and the psychological warfare of coupledom, it’s all there in this must see exhibition.

The exhibition curated by Georgina Maddox, features over 45 art pieces by more than 30 artists from India and abroad.  They will be showcasing a variety of media.

There is 8mm film animation and 16mm film transferred to video, Mixed media on archival print of graph paper, Mixed media on digital print that shows a world fractured, abstracted and evocative of an essential “selfhood”. Glazed and unglazed clay pots with multimedia installation and projections represent the feminine in all its aspects and glory. Simple yet stable; delicate yet strong; one that holds and preserves; one that can be submissive like the canvas to show projected on it, while also fierce-fully reflecting back.

 A paper sculpture with video projection that reverse the Earth as mother and where small units, when united celebrate femininity, a single channel digital video with sound that investigates the trajectories of authority & suppression, the struggle between detachment and belonging, the antithesis of solitude and alienation, the contradictions of rebel and surrender and the dichotomy of acceptance and rejection of social dogmas and expectations experienced as an individual who is deprived of motherhood in a foreign land. Then there is Gold Leaf on fibre glass which is a series of sculptures that rejoice in the feminine power of the mother goddess while bringing out the irony of placing them on a pedestal and so much more.

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