Shrine Empire Gallery presents "Whose History? Which Stories?" a group show (paintings, videos, photographs & installations) of five Indian & five South Korean artists at Stainless Art Gallery, 1-2, Mira Corporate Suits, Mathura Road, Ishwar Nagar > 7th-28th December 2012

Shrine Empire History Whose Which Stories Korean Artists Indian Artworks Paintings Installations Video Arts Photographs
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Time : 11:00 am - 7:00 pm

Entry : Free

Place : Stainless Art Gallery, 1-2, Mira Corporate Suits, Mathura Road, Ishwar Nagar, Delhi - 110065 
Landmark : Okhla Crossing, Near Tata Telecom and Godrej

Event Description : Shrine Empire in collaboration with The Stainless gallery presents 'Whose History? Which Stories?' a group show featuring paintings, videos, photographs and installations by five Indian and five South Korean artists curated by Oindrilla Maity Surai, featuring works by Atul Bhalla, Gigi Scaria, Prajakta Pallav, Praneet Soi and Tushar Joag from India and ChangWon Lee, Gim Gwang Cheol, SangHwa Park, Siyon Jin and YoungTae Kim from South Korea. 
In 2011, Shrine Empire, New Delhi had initiated the Art Scribes’ Award as an outreach program that scopes out ways for a young art writer, researcher or curator to explore Asian countries and address the issues of contemporary curating. This exhibition is the outcome of this three-month long residency in South Korea and the curator Oindrilla Maity Surai is the first recipient of this award. 
Says Shefali Somani, Director, Shrine Empire: “In order to create a platform for young writers, curators and researchers to have a hands-on experience in curating exhibitions, Shrine Empire had organised the Art Scribes’ Award last year which offered a residency programme in South Korea for the selected awardee. This was organized in collaboration with the Gwangju Metropolitan City Museum of Art, Gwangju, South Korea, as part of their Asian Curators’ Exchange Programme, which, quite co-incidentally started the same year.”
According to Anahita Taneja, Director, Shrine Empire: “Based on the research residency program that Surai attended, this curated show addresses the subtle connections between history and myth as portrayed through the works of art of ten artists from South Korea and India.”
The exhibition will be mounted at the state-of-the-art Stainless Gallery, which has in keeping with the vision of its founder-director Deepika Jindal, hosted many such cutting edge and creatively charged exhibitions every year marked by concepts and creativity of contemporary painters, photographers, sculptors and artists from various walks & fields of art.
Says curator Oindrilla Maity Surai: “The exhibition tries to find out the many similarities and idiosyncrasies that prevail in these two neighbouring countries, which claim to have ties with each other since time unknown. The natural human urge to connect each other through myths often in many ways also helps identifying the patterns of thoughts, even identical histories common in societies or neighbouring countries. It is also an attempt to trace the patterns, tendencies and future moorings of visual Art through its current traits.”
A myth is a powerful weapon for living, existing and reinforcing memory. Which means it is a necessity to re-evoke the present so much as the past. We continue to attach ourselves to our past through many lore. We need to live in one right at the moment. The patterns in the urban situations in India have undergone conspicuous changes since the post-Nehruvian era and the ensuing global economy post 1995, bringing with them almost surreptitiously a novel set of crises. Parallel developments unleashed in other parts of the Asian Sub-continent – in this context, South Korea. Our demands turn into dreams and gradually our desires shape up myths in which we constantly delve into. It reflects in our news, adverts, posters, cinema,  paintings, and toys and through every bit of our urban culture. It is what we aspire to see ourselves in/as.
Myth is equivocal. We often take myths for fictions, but the purpose of myths is far from being entertainment. They are the origins of things. They explain the cultures that subscribe to them. This show aims at identifying and addressing those elements that emerge from our cultural and emotional fringes, the discovery and the ‘otherness’ and at the same time portraying the national psyche.
SangHwa Park’s videos from the Inner Dream series (ongoing series of videos/ video in loop/time: variable) portray the essential pessimism of the 21st century in the post war world. Modern Science and technology have not necessarily associated themselves with well-being alone, but evils as well. Desire and craving continues to pervade society notwithstanding the devastations of the war. Park questions the objectivities that human civilization aims to achieve.
YoungTae Kim’s photographs, often in the form of blurry, overlapping images forming collages address memory and history. The war monuments (which form a major part of his work) should articulate “response-ability” vis-à-vis the past and the future. Even when built without such a conscious intention, they should be perceived as having this monitory and critical function. Yet most memorials are inactive and incapacitated. To quote Krzysztof Wodiczko: “Monuments and memorials, in their speechlessness and stillness, look strangely human, while traumatized humans, in their motionlessness and silence, may appear strangely monumental. Speechless survivors living in their shadows face the blank facades and blind eyes of our public buildings and memorials, those speechless witnesses to present-day injustices.”
ChangWon Lee’s interplay with negatives and positives of photographs (People of Trial: 2010, photographic projections) remind of another Korean artist Noh Suntag’s questioning the validity of war, freedom, the freedom fighter and the memory of them, while Siyon Jin, in his video projection titled Flow carries forward Nam June Paik’s legacy, explores technology as a means of mediating the past and the future; a journey from nature to culture and trying to rise from the ashes, like the Phoenix, wants to celebrate life by reaching out to people across the boundaries.
Gim Gwang Cheol’s videos of his intensely charged performances question the human situation in a sprawling city that grows oblivious of its past; its sacrifices to earn a free nation state and what it actually promised to achieve. Gwang Cheol writes about his Feel the Paper project: “It has the title of Feel the Paper. I have come up with it after six test performances. Of many titles, the expression of “feeling paper” resonated with myself. All of this is a kind of virtual illusion.”
Indian artist Atul Bhalla’s twelve lightboxes, titled The Listener from the West Heavens, is based on his work done in Shanghai in August 2010. He researched historical documents of drainage system, and selected a number of nodal points where he listened to, and took the pulse of, the arteries of the city. For Atul Bhalla, water being the repository of myth, history and meaning has been our only deliverer, mythically and metaphorically. “My work is an attempt to connect histories; those that are being constantly made, and others, which are constantly threatened or are being pushed under. I chose to connect recent historical sites, which are on the verge of being forgotten and/or covered over, within site of inner Shanghai, as a ‘Listener’: to water, to streams, canals, wells, locks, harbours, rivers, etc. I seek to discern all the untold stories, tales, and myths that remain untold and to witness what may /may not be allowed,” says the artist.
Praneet Soi’s video projections titled Drawing Machine carry with them the myths associated with homecoming, nostalgia, migration and the associated anxieties of the peripherals.
In Gigi Scaria’s video titled Amusement Park, the artist serves up a logical extension of utopian urban romanticism. Revealing his agenda, he states, “Ever since civilization was formed and evolved, the city has become a fascinating phenomenon. The world started to live up to the expectations of the city that, in turn, continuously demanded a space, logic and character of its own, in order to fulfill the aspirations of an urban nomad. Notions of identity, nationalism, modernism, politics, industrialization, lifestyle, madness, spirituality, crime - anything and everything the human being takes pride in or abhor asserting his/her own self are constantly produced, consumed and churned by the city.”
Tushar Joag’s pen and ink on paper works, titled Listening to the sound of one hand clapping, Regime Change and Fluid Dynamics, address the urban myths associated with cult figures, imagination and fantasy, so much a part of the urban life, remotely portraying the crises and pressures of city life, while Prajakta Pallav’s painting titled Please Have A Bite is about urban consumerism.

Related Events : Exhibitions
Shrine Empire Gallery presents "Whose History? Which Stories?" a group show (paintings, videos, photographs & installations) of five Indian & five South Korean artists at Stainless Art Gallery, 1-2, Mira Corporate Suits, Mathura Road, Ishwar Nagar > 7th-28th December 2012 Shrine Empire Gallery presents "Whose History? Which Stories?" a group show (paintings, videos, photographs & installations) of five Indian & five South Korean artists at Stainless Art Gallery, 1-2, Mira Corporate Suits, Mathura Road, Ishwar Nagar > 7th-28th December 2012 Reviewed by DelhiEvents on Friday, December 28, 2012 Rating: 5

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