Art steps into the public space

A multi-dimensional art project that looks to initiate the public display of art works begins in the Capital today. In Context: Public.Art.Ecology focuses on social interventions in the public sphere, with themes ranging from weather patterns and the effects of climate change to examining the significance of trees in the context of road zones.

Artists from India, Germany, Japan and USA have prepared the works during a six-week residency with Khoj Studio.“Art has the power to overcome all barriers, and such kind of alternative art practices are an extension of that. These also help artists in working better with the public as art isn’t for a certain class. It has to be taken to a larger platform,” says Pooja Sood, director, Khoj International Artists’ Association, which is the project organiser.

The installations and interventions that are part of the project will be displayed at three different venues in the city, including Select Citywalk mall in Saket, Barakhamba Road in Connaught Place, and the Khoj Studio in Khirkee Village, till April 16.Select Citywalk mall will witness interactive sculpture-making by artists Andrea Polli and Chuck Varga from the US, that illustrates the death of people in Delhi due to air pollution.

Other interesting works on display at the venue are video installations — while artists Sheba Chhachhi’s video The Water Diviner and Ravi Agarwal’s Polluted Waters talk about contamination and scarcity of water, Gigi Scaria’s video showcases the construction fever our city is facing today.

Mumbai-based artist Navjot Altaf’s intervention at Barakhamba Road attempts to make a difference by planting new trees, looking at the state of the soil and creating awareness. “My video features interviews with environmentalists, students, social activists and workers. We have also put up a live camera at the venue that records peoples’ comments and reactions while watching the video,” says Altaf.

Art works displayed at the Khoj Studio include The Object of my Extension and Bhogi/Rogi, both interactive video interventions, and a sound installation titled Muft Ki Saklah & Gharelu Nuskeh. The project will also feature artists Thukral & Tagra’s sculpture and public intervention work at the Pushp Vihar Monday Market.

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