KNMA's virtual exhibition reflects on the crises the world is currently facing

Delirium//Equilibrium is an online exhibition of films and installations that are woven together in an audio-visual format

Ayesha Tabassum Published :  16th September 2021 06:28 PM   |   Published :   |  16th September 2021 06:28 PM
Kaushik Mukhopadhyay’s Small, Medium But Not Large, a kinetic installation

Kaushik Mukhopadhyay’s Small, Medium But Not Large, a kinetic installation

The socially distanced world has little scope for long-drawn-out, in-person conversations. The exchange of ideas today is at the mercy of technology and gadgets which provide a virtual space for people to meet. In this scenario, hosting an online interactive art show seems like an appropriate option. But can it engage viewers like an offline show? A case in point is Delirium//Equilibrium, an online exhibition of films and installations woven together in an audio-visual format.

Hosted by Kiran Nadar Museum of Art the exhibit features works by 16 artists. These works were earlier displayed physically at the museum. However, the present virtual rendition relooks at the exhibits in context with the current changes in the world. Video stories of different subjects like a mathematician who withdraws from everyday life to live in an abandoned train coach in the wilderness, a rotating zoetrope that pays homage to a renowned opera performer, and tabletop kinetic installations are part of this video narrative.

Forest, a multimedia work by Ranbir Kaleka

Animal instinct
One of the exhibits, Forest, a multimedia work by Ranbir Kaleka, is captivating because of the juxtaposition of unlikely elements such as a bookshelf in the wilderness, with a lion next to it, and a man sitting on a stool with his hands resting on a table. “The meaning of an image in an artwork depends on the context in which it is situated. A lion in a circus cage would mean something different, whereas here, the lion lying next to books in a forest, can be read as a guardian of knowledge,” explains the artist. The exhibition, which is curated by Roobina Karode, director and chief curator, KNMA, strategically places the artist’s work at a point when the video questions the world’s schizophrenic nature. “It’s primarily the curatorial vision of Roobina that created the dialogue, bringing together particular works of the artists. One of the many threads that connect my work with the rest is the state of the mind, the internal monologue manifested in images, gestures, events, mechanics, and sounds in the artworks,” says Ranbir.

Stuck in time
While the world has always adapted to change, there is a part of it that wants to hold onto the past. Kaushik Mukhopadhyay’s Small, Medium But Not Large, a kinetic installation, evokes memories from the era of rotary dial phones and vintage computers. “The work started with old household gadgets lying in my studio. I was just inquisitive about the mechanical functioning and started tinkering with them. People like me who were born in the age of trunk calls found mobile phones an unnecessary intrusion. So these discarded objects appeared special to me. The life span of such objects is short and becoming shorter with every passing year. I wanted to rejuvenate them,” explains Kaushik. His work not only provokes one to think of the futility of ‘newness’, but it is also fascinating. Each of the works featured in the video was created during a specific period. But the remarkable aspect of this exhibition is that the works have been woven in seamlessly and make the viewer reflect on the current scenario of the world.

Ongoing. Details: