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Singapore based, Indo-British artist Kavita Issar Batra to host her debut solo show in India titled
NO NUMBER, NO NAME - an exhibition of paintings, photographs, video and installations - that trains its lens on society through the natural, organic materials that ‘litter’ our streets and pavements
New Delhi: Singapore-based, Indo-British artist Kavita Issar Batra is showing her solo show of paintings, photographs, video and installations titled No Number, No Name at the Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi from March 27 to April 6, 2019, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The show is Issar-Batra's first solo in India curated by art historian and curator Dr Alka Pande. A greater portion of the proceeds from the exhibition will go to Chintan Environmental Research and Action Group.
Issar-Batra is drawn to the natural, organic materials that ‘litter’ our streets and pavements. They lurk in the shadows quietly accepting all that comes their way – being trampled on or driven over, subject to the vagaries of the weather which all determine their fate – whether they crumble to dust on hot dry days or slowly disintegrate into the wetness merging with the surface they find themselves on. Either way, returning to the earth, nutrients to the soil. Detached from their parent plant, these nameless flowers, leaves, seedpods, twigs, pieces of bark etc. are dying, that process may take a long or short time. For us humans too, from the time we exit our mother’s womb, the only certainty is that we will die. Again, none of us know how long what we call ‘life’ will last. We too are changing from infants to children to adulthood and then old age. Society today seems obsessed with erasing changes that are regarded as imperfections or signs of aging, to fit with idealised notions of what is beautiful. Nature points to the peace that comes with ‘acceptance’ and celebration of these changes and their impermanence. Her work gives a voice to the discarded and ignored, finding beauty and meaning in it.
Issar-Batra’s art practice is based on the philosophy of serendipity. The greatest, most unexpected yet constant teacher and muse on her art journey have been the roads/pavements and their transitory inhabitants of her immediate surroundings wherever she is. For over six years they have pulled her gaze downwards and continue to be a daily journey of discovery and expression.
Adds Dr Alka Pande, curator: “From a spider spiralling up towards the sky, to leaves burnt from the heat of the bright sun, to dried twigs and flowers strewn on her walking routes are all captured by Kavita’s constant companion - the I phone. The photographs are re-looked and re-imagined as visual treats on canvas and paper bringing alive a rare vibrancy. No number No Name is Kavita’s engagement with her immediate environment and a thoughtful, quiet introspection where the outward eye softly nestles within her innerscapes and teases out silhouettes of people sans names, without numbers. The deep engagement with ‘detritus’ fuelled Kavita to engage with Chintan, the Delhi based NGO which supports and nurtures the waste collectors. And it was a seamless unspoken connection which brought about the collaboration, moving Kavita to donate 60 per cent of the sale proceeds from her exhibition for the healthier life span of Chintan.”