Millennium Post

Art and evolution

Works of artists from Portugal, Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Mozambique and India comprise the travelling exhibition underway at the India International Centre here. The series of uncanny artworks seem to tell a story. An anti-clock wise tour of the gallery indicates an evolution, a moving forward of time.

Organised by Perve Galeria with support of the Portugal Embassy, the exhibition Lusophonies/Lusofonias display both modern and contemporary art by different generations of the Portuguese speaking countries or Lusophones which include Portugal, Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, Mozambique and certain parts of India.

All the artworks in the exhibition have a common connection, whether experiential or through a formal aesthetic, related to African roots. A troika of oxymoronic images, two from India and one from Africa, serves as a prologue to the collection which manifests the cross-cultural developments that followed the colonization across continents and the struggle against it.

“The origin of this collection was the need to reflect on how lusophone countries saw and see Lusophonie, a plural and dialectical vision, full of discrepancies, ambiguities and mutual contamination about culture, society, and even about a common language,” says Nunes.

The show has been chronologically divided into three sections: ‘Colonialism’, ‘Independence’ and ‘Miscegenation and Diaspora.’  Moving from one period to another in the anthology portrays a clear evolution from the “tendency to use art as a revolutionary discourse” in colonies to the establishment of sovereign political regimes after independence.

“In Portugal, the freedom of speech that followed several decades of repression was a symptom of the artistic development,” says Nunes.

The final part of the Lusophonies exhibition represents the artistic development that has occurred over time extending up to the present, not only in the lusophone world, but also in the countries where artists today work about Lusophonie and African influence issues. Representation from India includes two photographs by Subodh Kerkar and a set of pots or ‘matkas’ usually used by women in Indian villages to carry water.

Closing this chapter of exhibition, which speaks majorly of the African influence, is a box of postcard sized artworks, some of them suspended in the air through strings around it, by Nobel Laureate author Gabriel Garcia Marquez. The exhibition is set to be on display till February 15.
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