New Delhi: Latitude 28 presents a group show titled LOVE IS A FOUR LETTER WORD, with new works by five artists Manjunath Kamath, Chintan Upadhyay,Chittrovanu Mazumdar, Bose Krishnamachari (India) and Sana Arjumand (Pakistan) atLATITUDE 28, F/208, Lado Sarai, New Delhi, from August 30, 2011 till September 30, 2011.11.am. to 7 p.m.
Says Bhavna Kakar, Director Latitude 28: “ ‘Love’ in this exhibition is being rendered in a totally different perspective. This is not the love of fairy tales. Nor is this the love of tender compassion, which contentedly gives of itself, as though from an inexhaustible vessel of selflessness. This love is a drug, with a roller coaster of dizzying highs and woozy lows. It is the stuff that chases butterflies in the stomach, a distance memory that haunts an addict. It is a grammatical interjection, a linguistic jolt. This is an ever-dissolving self, where the other is a constantly changing projection of what we are and what we would like to be. It is a love which, in so many ways, turns us into the purveyors and keepers of violence. In some ways, love and its undoing can be cavity search, an unexpected breach of a carefully guarded fortress. With the many promises associated with love as a mass cultural condition, the word is saturated with its own attending ironies and categorical imperatives. Reviling and irresistible, love is akin to a death drive that trembles on the boundaries of self-annihilation and absurdity.”
For instance, Sana Arjumand says about her work: “ ‘Love is blind’ was the first proverb that I heard as a young girl about love. At that time I never really understood what it meant. Inquisitive as I was about love, I asked my mother about its meaning. My mother explained that love makes one so blind, that they become capable of falling in love with a donkey. I wonder if these old quotes about love are valid any more in today’s world, especially in this age of television when our emotions are rendered by globalization. Most of our moves seem planned and weighed. I don't think love is blind, at least not any more. I think love is measured and reconsidered and hence predictable. Older, rich men in search of much younger partners. The picture perfect girl is a petite 24, 36, 24 or smaller. After all, the term size zero was coined very recently. By painting the opposite of the illusion of ideal scenarios, in my work titled ‘Politics of love’, I comment/question the terms and conditions that have been carved on the package of love. Perhaps love has become a multiple eyed monster.”
Similarly Manjunath Kamath explains: “I am emphasizing on an abstract language of love which is opposed to the generic definition and assimilation of it. Rather I have tried to provide an interpretation of it vis-s-vis the Upanishads. I believe the ancient connotation and understanding of love was much stronger as opposed to the commercialization infused in this gesture in the modern times which is quite fake.”
Bose Krishnamachari says about his work, made in duco paint on wood, in the current show: “Blindness is a sort of denial. Blindness accentuates other sensory faculties in a human being. The abstraction of a feeling is made tactile in a three dimensional rendition, which is highly coded for those who have the power of eyesight (not ‘vision’). A temporary blindness is made to be desirable amongst the viewers in order to grasp the core intention of the creator. Denial of a faculty becomes medium of aspiration to know, feel, exercise and also to affect the notion of love.” The artist posits ‘blindness’ and the use of Braille paper as the continuity of a discourse that he started several years back using the same medium.
Chintan Upadhyay did his B.F.A. (Painting) and M.F.A. (Painting) from the Faculty of Fine Arts, Baroda. He has held many solo shows that showcase the different aspects of cultural hybridism. A recipient of the Taj Gourav India Award in 2008, Chintan works and lives in Mumbai.
Chittrovanu Mazumdar is a Kolkata-based artist who has been active in the contemporary Indian art scene for about three decades. Having started as a painter, Chittrovanu has since explored a broad spectrum of media and technology in his work. The artist incorporates inputs from his culturally varied upbringing in Kolkata and Paris and a range of eclectic reading in three languages - French, English and Bengali. Mazumdar’s work is characterized by major shifts in style and form – from painting to multimedia environments and sound sculpture.