Jiss Victor, the curator of the show has presented one of the dominant issues of the modern world that needs addressing

An art exhibition in Kochi that raises awareness about Mother EarthDeepa Gopal
Blog Art Tuesday, July 12, 2016 - 13:57

By Deepa Gopal

It is only when one is completely immersed, and able to sense the pulse of nature that one can experience “Soilitude”. “So(i)litude”, an art exhibition in Kochi by artists Shinod Akkaraparambil, Shijo Jacob, Eva Bubla and Lilli Tolp raises awareness about preserving and conserving nature through their work.  

Shinod Akkaraparambil, an Assistant Editor with The Times of India in Chennai uses a palette that matches the earth. Titled, “Of Birth and Rebirth”, his collection of 258 paintings on 10 panels vividly captures “returning to the very soil that gave us form”. Each panel needs careful observation to see those forms that lay coded. It is an unravelling that has to be done by the viewer. He says he deliberately chose the mud-coloured palette to bring forth the intuitive forms. Soil, for Shinod, remains the link between the urban and rustic.

“Displaced/Mis-placed,” an art installation by Shijo Jacob, a lecturer in Raja Ravi Varma College of Fine Arts in Mavelikkara displays the love for his land, the nostalgia associated with it and the loss of old world earthly charm. Shijo laments about the concrete boom, replacing all that once was.  

His work with a pathway of the things from the bygone era is an inviting and moving piece. It portrays the loss endured by the farming community which has been totally alienated from their familiar surroundings and is now utterly misplaced and miserable.

Shijo’s forte is the way he uses maps and diagrams in his paintings and this has been brought out in this show.  The map of projects like the International Airport, Convention Center in Kochi that is soon to occupy the farming lands, is an eye-opener for the viewers.

Eva Bubla from Hungary and Lilli Tolp from Estonia are collaborators who met in Indonesia as students. They are the founders of the environmental art organization, Green Root Lab. They have been working on issues of soil, land and the environment for the past two years now. Their site-specific installation notes, “For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.” The artists’ message is loud and clear, urging one and all to investigate into the concerns of the soil and the environment.   

The cube, they say, is a human construct which is also a reminder for us to witness our position in the cycle of nature. One can see the grass and soil growing around the construct. According to Eva and Lilli, “our Earth is a breathing entity” and to recognize that fact seems to be the most effective way to care and respect it.

In its entirety, Jiss Victor, director of the Buddha Gallery in Kochi and the curator of the show, has presented one of the dominant issues of the modern world that needs to be met with gravity and concern. The show was inaugurated by the eminent artist, Murali Cheeroth on 7th July and will run through 12th July in Durbar Hall Art Gallery D, Kochi.

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