CHINTAN UPADHYAY
“BETWEEN TIME & CULTURE”
5 M A R T - 3 N İ S A N 2015
M A R C H
A P R I L
ZORLU PERFORMANS SANATLARI MERKEZİ
CHINTAN UPADHYAY
“BETWEEN TIME & CULTURE”
5 M A R T - 3 N İ S A N 2015
M A R C H
A P R I L
ZORLU PERFORMANS SANATLARI MERKEZİ
Gerçekler Polİtİkası
Transjenik gerçekler, sanal olanaklar, hologram ve lazer görüntüleri, foto-koagülasyonlu kumaş baskılar, yapay döllenme ve embriyo transferleri gibi
olanaklara sahip çağımızda gerçekleri dönüştürmek ve onları istediğimiz gibi kullanmak yeni dünya düzeninin kurulmasına olanak sağlıyor. Chintan,
bu yeni dünya düzeninin tartışmak istiyor. İçinde yaşadığımız bu kapitalist tüketim cennetinin hem oyuncuları hem izleyicileri olduk. Gerçekliğin yeni
boyutunu oluşturan hiper-gerçeklik veya onun yerine geçen “taklit”, sanatçının “Smart Alec” heykellerinde ortaya attığı polemik tartışmanın konusudur.
Chintan’ın “Smart Alec/ukala” olarak adlandırdığı boyalı bebeklerden oluşan resim ve heykellerinin gövdelerinde yer alan Rajastan ve Moğol minyatür
süslemeleri ve “Kamasutra” imajları, sanatçının çalışmalarının ana temasını oluşturmaktadır.
Gerçek kavramının asıl gerçekten uzaklaşması, on yılı aşkın bir süredir çağdaş toplumsal yaşamımızı etkileyen kaygı verici bir olgudur.
Her şeyi, bio-teknolojik olanaklarla, genetik ve nörolojik olarak kopyalama, programlama ve yönetme imkanını sağlayan Klonlama’yı örnek aldığımızda,
kendi çeşitliliğimizle başa çıkma yetersizliğimizi ve kopyalanan hücrelerle, cinsiyetsiz ve ölümsüz yaratıklar olarak, patolojik bir sonsuzluğa doğru yol
aldığımızı görüyoruz. Bu gelişme, insanlık tarihini anlamsız sözcükler karmaşasına dönüştürerek, yaşamımızı bir hücre çürümesine veya organik gübre
makinesinin etkinliğine indirgemeyi amaçlıyor.
Chintan, son yıllarda, gerçeğin katledilmesi konusundaki kaygılarını özellikle vurgulamaya çalışıyor. “Maya” ve Clone Vitthala” özel tasarlanan bir galeri
mekanında düzenlenen bir tekrarlama çalışması. “Maya”nın sergilendiği, duvarları ve halıları kırmızı renkte olan galeri, ana rahmini andıran bir mağarayı
andırıyor. “Clone Vitthala” ise gösterişli ve çok yüzeyli bir alan yaratan aynalı bir galeride sergileniyor.
Kültürel bilgi birimlerini ve tekrarlanan siyasi görüşleri yansıtan Chintan’ın heykel ve resimleri, siber saldırı sembolleri, siber oyuncaklar, maddesiz ve atıl
nesneler olarak, içinde yaşadığımız tinsellikten arındırılmış çıkarcı evrenimizi temsil ediyor. Sahte krallıklarda oluşan “Gerçek olmayan” gerçekler Lacan’ın
tabiriyle “sahte bir gösteride SERGİLENME” olgusunu hatırlatıyor.
Chintan’ın vurgulamak istediği konulardan biri, insan bedeninin, kendisinin yerine geçecek suni bir aygıta dönüştürülmesidir. Jean Baudrillard’in ifadesiyle
“ Her hücredeki genetik formül bedenin gerçek bir protezine dönüşmekte... Protez, genellikle, çalışmayan bir organın yerine geçen yapay bir doku veya
bedenimizin bir uzantısı ise, vücudumuzla ilgili tüm bilgileri içeren DNA molekülleri vücudumuzun sonsuza kadar uzanmasını sağlayan en iyi protezdir; bu
durumda vücut sonsuza kadar uzanan bir dizi protezden başka bir şey olamaz”. Baudrillard “simulacra (benzer, taklit)” kavramını post-modern çağımızın
yarattığı bir görüntü olarak kullanıyor. Baudrillard’a göre “gerçek” ve öz kimlikler artık yok oldu ve onların yerini, aşırı derecede metalaştırılmış çağımızın
gerçekle bağlantısı olmayan kopuk, yabancılaşmış ve soyutlanmış “taklidin taklitleri ” aldı.
“Clone Vitthals” enstalasyonunun şeytani mekan ortamı ve izleyicilerin galerinin sonsuza uzanan yapay alanındaki heykel kopyalarıyla karşı karşıya
gelmesi, varlığımız konusunda duyulan endişeyi ve gizli tehlike uyarısını yansıtmaktadır.
Tüketicilik, aşırı zevke yöneltme mantığını içerir ve hiper-gerçeklik hiçbir zaman var olmamış bir şeyin taklididir. Hiper-gerçeklik, bilincin, duygusal
bağlılıklardan uzaklaşarak, yapay bir öykünüm ortamında, temelden yoksun görüntülerin sonsuza dek tekrarlanmasını içeren bir boşluğa düşmesine yol
açar. Memnuniyet ve mutluluğun hiper-gerçeklik ortamına yansıması, bireyin baskı altında kalmasına yol açar ve hiper-gerçeklik, kendi yapay dünyasında,
gerçeği ortadan kaldırmayı başarır.
Şehvet, Chintan’ın eserlerinde her zaman özel bir konuma sahiptir. “Maya”, “Mutant” ve “Clone Vitthala” (geçen sergiler) de bu niteliği yansıtır.
Biyolojinin ideolojik boyutu ve şehvetin siyasi ifadesi çağdaş sanatın son yıllardaki akımlarında yer almakta. Chitan’ın bebeklerinin adı olan “Smart Alec”
sözlükte ukala, kendinden çok emin bir kişi olarak tanımlanıyor. Smart Aleck ayrıca ilk yeni akım pornografik filmlere verilen isimdir. Cinsel ilişki ve oral
seks sahneleri içeren bu kısa film çok popüler olmuştu.
Pornografi, Chintan’ın, çağdaş hiper-tüketim toplumu konusundaki görüşlerini vurgulamak için kullanmayı tercih ettiği bir yöntemdir. Sanatçı,
cinselliğin nedenini ortaya çıkarmak amacıyla cinsel imgeler kullanır. Smart Alec’in resim ve heykellerindeki bedeni, Kamasutra ve diğer erotik Hindistan
minyatürlerinden esinlenen çizimlerle süslenmiştir. Cinsel arzunun monografisini oluşturan bu çizimler kırmızı renkte bir galeride sergilendi.
Sanatçının, tüm eserlerinde, orijinal bir bakış açısı ve mimari boyutlar kullanarak vurguladığı çocuksu ifadelerde, şeytani şişman kafalar ile çarpıcı cinsel
organlar arasındaki muhteşem ilişki vurgulanır.
İzleyicinin bakış açısının sınırlarını anladığımızda, bu eserlerin kapitalist tüketim toplumundaki ideolojik ve hayali boyutları vurgulanır ve yerlerini bulur.
Orijinal olmayan yenilik ve gerçek bir kopyanın kopyası olan Smart Alec, Yeni İnsanın biyolojisi ve cinselliğinin sembolü olarak, maddi bir huzursuzluğun
mantığını sorgular. Smart Alec, bir çıkmazı ve ikilemi, arzu ve ölümü yansıtır. Smart Alec, Chintan’ın yarattığı yeni bir mitos olarak, modası geçmiş bir
algılama yenileme ütopyasını oluşturan unsurdur.
Sanjeev Khandekar (şair, yazar ve sanatçı)
4
Politics of Real
Our new world of transgenic realities and virtual possibilities, hologrammatic existences and laser images, photo-coagulative tissue fixing, in
vitro fertilisations and ex vivo zygote building, possibilities of manoeuvring and choreographing realities has made it possible to have a new order for
the world. What is this new order is precisely the contestation that Chintan wants to put forward. The new order has to be necessarily viewed in the
context of late capitalist consumerist paradise, that we are part of, as a players and as viewers simultaneously. Hyperreality is the new order of the real,
or ‘imitation’ is the new real, is the polemic that he offers through his ‘Smart Alec’ sculptures.
Chintan’s paintings and sculptures are painted designed babies, what he calls the “Smart Alecs”, their bodies wearing extracts from Rajasthan and
Mughal miniature paintings, in many works highlighting the typical ‘Kamsutra’ images, as a underlying motif of the works.
The announcement of Real,of its divorce from the real has been a concern for the contemporary social life for almost a decade or more.
Take one simple example of Cloning, one of the bio technological means that has enabled man to subject everything to the process of simulation,
programming, and manage everything genetically and neurologically. The process shows an incapability of braving through our own diversity and
reducing our existence to pathological eternity of self replicating cells to our viral origins as sexless immortal beings. It reduces history of mankind to a
meaningless clutter of words and abates it to a meiotic decay or to an activity of composting machine.
The very murder of the real, is the concern that Chintan is putting forward through a series of his efforts for last few years. ‘Maya’ and ‘Clone Vitthala’
is another ingemination that he lays out as if nestled meme machines in a specially designed gallery space. In case of ‘Maya” the gallery is painted red,
carpeted red to create a womb like cave while ‘clone Vitthala’ is staged in a mirror gallery to create multiple spaces in a spectacular way.
For Chintan, the sculptures and his paintings serve as units of cultural information, symbols of political memes, they look like cyber blitzes, kind of cyber
game objects, substance-less, disinvested of material inertia, they represent the utilitarian de-spiritualized universe and open up the possibilities of new
realms of reality. The realities here are ‘ not real’ realities and their domains are nothing but false kingdoms, ‘to STAGE it in a fake spectacle’ as Lacan calls.
Subjecting of body as an artificial device to replace the body, is one of the concerns that Chintan has in his mind. Jean Baudrillard has defined the
problem as, ‘It is a genetic formula inscribed in each cell that becomes the veritable modern prosthesis of a body,…….. If the prosthesis is commonly
an artifact that supplements a failing organ, or the instrumental extension of a body, then the DNA molecule, which contains all information relative to
a body, is the prosthesis par excellence, the one that will allow for the indefinite extension of this body by the body itself - this body itself being nothing
but an indefinite series of prostheses.”. Baudrillard uses concept of ‘simulacra’ to describe the state of image and representation which our postmodern
moment has created, For him, there are no longer any ‘true’ or essential identities, instead by virtue of our state hyper commoditization we are left with
series of detached, distanced, alienated and isolated images which are merely ‘copies of copy’ holding no claims to the essential truth.
Creation of demonic space is a primary disposition of his ‘Clone Vitthals’ installation. And demusculinization of fantasy kernel of our being is an
underlined alarum that the viewer perceives when he encounters the copies of copy sculptures arranged in unending false space of the gallery.
The logic of consumerism is to initiate luxuriation, and hyperreality provides for a smooth wallowing. The hyperrality is a simulation of something that
never existed. It tricks the consciousness into detaching from any real emotional engagement, instead opting for artificial simulation, and endless
reproductions of fundamentally empty appearance. Fullfillment and therefore happiness finds their reflection in hyperreality, by overpowering an
individual. Hyperreality thus swallows reality into its ‘not real world’.
Libidanility has been always a characteristic trait for Chintan’s works. ‘Maya’, Mutant and ‘Clone Vitthala’ (past exhibition) are not exceptions. Biology
as an ideology and libidinality as a political expression has been a trend for some time in contemporary art. Chintans babies are titled as Smart Alec, the
dictionary meaning of Smart Alec is an impudent person, obnoxiously self assertive. Smart Aleck, is also the name of one of the most widely circulated
of the early underground pornographic films. The short film has scenes of sexual intercourses and fellatio, which became popular.
Pornography has been always Chintan’s first preference to comment on contemporary hyper consumer society. He uses sexual imagery to unearth
the reason of sexuation. The skin that the Smart Alec bears in his paintings and sculptures is a selection of leafs of Indian miniature paintings, often
personating Kamsutra pictures or related elite erotica, a kind of a monograph on desire. They lurk voluptuously on the bodies of his works, and sneak
into the gallery hall that is filled up with red colour.
All of his works strike a strange angle, as a built in architecture, or as if default system, what hits your eyes every time is the infantile visage, almost
theatrical and Mephistophelean, with the globus fat head, and then the inbuilt angle ushers viewer vision leading him to confront with the conspicuous
genitals of the body, making a weird and wonderful relationship between head and genitals apparent.
Once we understand the limits of viewer’s gaze, the ideolological and fantasmatic coordinates of his works in the matrix of the late capitalist consumerist
contemporary society get denoted, and find their location.
Smart Alec is his new real, a copy of the copy, without an original, It stands for a symbol of New Man, his biology and his sexuation entails a logic
of deprivation of material languor. Smart Alec is predicament and a dialema, his desire and death. Smart Alec is new myth that Chintan is building,
predicative of outmoded utopia of renewal of perception.
Sanjeev Khandekar (poet, writer and visual artist)
5
Upadhyay’in İnsanlığa Seslenen Bebeklerİ
Yaşamını ve çalışmalarını Hindistan’ın Mumbai şehrinde yürüten sanatçı Chintan Upadhyay
(1972), kendi ülkesinin güncel sanat ortamının önde gelen ismi olmakla birlikte, uluslararası sanat
ortamının da aşina olduğu bir isim. Sanatçının işlerinin Türkiye’deki ilk gösterimini ise İstanbul
Zorlu Performans Sanatları Merkezi’nde düzenlenen kişisel sergi ile Beyaz Art üstleniyor.
Upadhyay’in resimlerinde, heykellerinde ve mekana özgü yerleştirmelerinde bebek figürlerine
sık rastlanır. Alışılagelmişin dışında bir yaklaşımla betimlenen bu bebekler sanki sizinle iletişim
kurmaya, bir tür işaret dilini kullanarak size bir şeyler anlatmaya çalışıyor, adeta ikinci bir kişiliği
açığa çıkarıyorlar. Hatta kimi zaman doğrudan gözlerinizin içine bakarak size meydan okuyorlar.
Sanatçı bir bakıma bu bebekler aracılığıyla insanlara sesleniyor.
İşlerinde göz alıcı renkler kullanmak konusunda son derece cesur ve cömert davranan sanatçı,
yarattığı bebek, kadın ve erkek figürlerini kendi doğalarından ve ortamlarından kopararak zamanla
mekanın önemsiz olduğu bir yere bırakıverir. Sanatçının minyatür sanatından esinlenerek çizdiği
desenler ve geleneksel tasvirler, bu bedenlerle yüzleri dövme gibi sarar. Upadhyay’in kendine has
bir üslupla işlediği bu unsurlar eleştirel, ironik ve sorgulayan ifadelere dönüşür. Onun bu tavrından
ataerkil toplum yapısı da, cinsiyet ve cinselliğe dair tabular da, güncel politikalar da nasibini alır.
Upadhyay’in sanatsal pratiğinin temelinde resim yer alsa da, heykelleri ve mekana özgü
yerleştirmeleriyle zaten tuvalin dışına çıkmaya her an hazır gibi görünen figürlerinin üçüncü
boyuta adım attığını görüyoruz. Bilinmeyen bir faktör nedeniyle mutasyona uğramış, vücutları
deforme olmuş veya fazladan organlar geliştirmiş bebek heykelleri, sanatçının resimlerinde
yakaladığı etkiyi bir adım ileri taşıyor.
2004 yılında Charles Wallace Vakfı Ödülü’nü kazanan sanatçının yapıtları, içerisinde yaşadığı
kültürün melez yapısıyla benzerlikler gösterir. Upadhyay’in çalışmalarında gelenekselle çağdaş,
geçmişle gelecek ve Doğu’yla Batı gibi birbirine zıt unsurların iç içe geçtiği gözlemlenir. Ve sonuçta
ortaya çıkan işler, Hindistan’ın yerel kültürüne dair izlerin yanı sıra daha geniş coğrafyalarda
karşılık bulan bir yaklaşımı barındırır.
Tuba Esen
6
Upadhyay’s babies, a call to mankind
Chintan Upadhyay (1972) who lives and works in Mumbai, India, is the prominent figure of
contemporary art in India and is also well known in international art circles. The first exhibition
of the artist’s work in Turkey is organized by Beyazart, at Istanbul Zorlu Performing Arts Center.
Chintan’s paintings and sculptures are unusually designed babies which try to transmit a message
using some sort of sign language to communicate a dual personality and looking into your eyes
in a challenging way. The artist calls out to mankind through his babies.
Upadhyay is very bold and generous in the way he uses bright colors in his work; he tears away
the female and male dolls from their own natural setting and transports them to an environment
where time and space are irrelevant. His designs and traditional depictions inspired from the art
of miniature, cover bodies and faces like tattoos. These components of Upadhyay’s original style
are transformed into critical, ironic and questioning expressions which criticize patriarchal society
and sexual taboos as well as current politics.
Although painting is at the root of Upadhyay’s artistic practice, we can see that his sculptures
and figures which seem ready to jump out of the canvas at any moment, are setting into a third
dimension. The sculpted dolls which look deformed and mutational with additional members,
allow the artist to make a strong impact on the viewer.
The works of the artist, who won the Charles Wallace award in 2004, have a hybrid dimension
which reflects his native cultural environment. Opposing trends, such as traditional and
contemporary, past and future, East and West, are combined in his works which reflect local
Indian culture mingled with wider horizons.
Tuba Esen
7
8
KNOWN - UNKNOWN
30,48 x 30,48 cm.
dijital baskı, 1/5 edisyon + 2 A.E.
digital print on paper, edition 1/5 + 2 A.E.
60’lık set / set of 60
2014
9
10
GOLMAL (CHEAT)
92 x 92 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2009
11
THEIR CARRIER YOUR DESIRES LEFT ME ALONE
IN THIS SCARY WORLD
WHO IS RESPONSIBLE FOR MY MUTATION
215 x 305 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2006
12
13
14
VISARJAN
213 x 305 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2008
15
16
A TRAVEL
BETWEEN TIME & CULTURE
183 x 214 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2013
17
18
BRAHMA
92 x 92 x 92 cm.
fiberglas, ahşap ve akrilik
fiberglass, wood and acrylic
2008
19
OLD GAZE AND NEW ACTOR
213 x 305 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2008
20
21
22
TOUCH OF YOUR HAND AND I AM READY
92 x 92 x 92 cm.
yağlıboya, akrilik, ahşap ve fiberglass
oil, acrylic, wood and fiberglass
2008
23
24
SMART ALEC
183 x 245 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2007
25
26
I AM FIXED
92 x 92 x 92 cm.
yağlıboya, akrilik, ahşap ve fiberglass
oil, acrylic, wood and fiberglass
2008
27
28
TREE OF LIFE
60 x 45 x 45 cm.
altın varak, fiberglass ve ahşap
gold leaf, fiberglass and wood
2012
29
BETWEEN TIME & CULTURE
122 x 153 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2014
30
31
32
GAME
183 x 183 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2009
33
SCARY WORLD
153 x 153 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2010
34
35
36
CHINTU
183 x 122 cm.
tuval üzeri yağlıboya ve akrilik
oil and acrylic on canvas
2009
37
THIS BABY IS NOT A BABY
Sanjeev Khandekar
who began to produce in the periods where weight began disappearing.
Chintan has worked in variety of mediums. Drawings, painting, sculptures,
installations, performances, public art, printmaking, collaborations, -what
not is left out?
Initially intrigued by genetic revolutionary inventions, and feared by
growing capitalistic consumerist never satiating desires, his expression
chose to make designed babies, and remained his signature work. Local
being threatened, be it be a crop, or be it the food, he understood that the
language of life is being uprooted. His computer programmed drawings
of babies when became paintings or sculptures began wearing natural
and human forms depicted in miniature paintings well known world over
as Mughal paintings of Jaipur, Bikaner, Amber, Kishangarh, Ajmer and
several such small Rajput States of Rajstan. Miniatures became his moral
choice, kind of an immediate recluse for an artist to meditate upon.
Baby’s head at Nariman Point in Mumbai, public project
Chintan Upadhyay is one of the important contemporary Indian artists
because he is one of those few artists who could bring the traditional
indian craft blended with the contemporary concerns and issues in the
most pleasant artistic forms. Indian craft has a long sociopolitical history.
And it is the history that has been evolved through indian crafts and art over
a long period of last few thousand years. Art has been always a product
of the history. History is constructed by several points of political events
that coerce and obligate marriages of cultures. Culture is a language & a
Language is an art and or craft that mirrors nothing but our own history.
Chintan’s fundamental concern, and therefore interest is the language of
art, therefore, his art, is often a product of his continued anxiety of and
about the history. History of his people, history of his region, it’s geopolitics,
and noesis of his own roots is his constant yearnings.
He was born and brought up at Rajastan, one of the regions known for
its historical monuments rich in art & craft. From the local vesture to its
architecture and from food preparations to music recitations Rajstan is
not only brightly colourful,but also displays a passion for a prominent
exhibition of colour structures. The syntax and the cytoarchitectonics of his
artistic compositions therefore consciously and unconsciously remind us of
his regional concerns of local artefacts.
He began his art career in early 90s, when the world was changing.
Change was humongous. Politically it was being organised as a unipolar
new world, Cold War was over, capitalism had reinvented itself into a new
form of crony and carnivalised outlook. Philosophy had begun to think
about non metaphysical and beyond human possibilities. Technology
of information,digital and genetic invention had created another world
within the human world, altering the concerns of body and mind. Virtual
was replacing the Real silently. Economies were rebuilt, new money and
new rich were appearing on horizon. Sociopolitical plates were shifting,
a new tectonic movement had begun. World was metamorphosing. This
metamorphosis was hitherto not seen by human history, Kafka or Dali,
modern or post-modern, Woodstock or Rage Against Machine were seen
as a deficient and not helpful enough to explain the tensions of new world.
Burden of the history and its awareness was reducing thinner, weightless
and blurred. Living in a space, where Gravity is not felt is not easy. Lightness
has become new property of the emerging world. Chintan is a product of
the generation of artists, writers and thinkers, activists, musicians and poets
Dichotomy and duality is what contemporary times present before us again
and again as an identity of our existence, where virtual real presents itself as
a real. Real blurs or deforms. Not mere contradictions, but the dichotomies
of present living in every aspects have been nightmarish blessings in
disguise for the new man. He is torn and rebuilt by their repelling forces
constantly. Chintan, like a few others of his contemporaries realised it, his
designer Babies, born out of some repetitive computer generated drawings
‘avtared’ with the skin of five hundred years old decorative miniatures.
These miniatures though produced by humble artists & craftsmen were
always remained in palaces of nobles, Royals and aristocrats. They bear the
signature of feudal past and an aesthetic of Mughal Power.Chintan uses
them as a skin -strategically and intelligently almost like a decoy to lure the
viewer, the way packaging and advertisements function in the society of
consumerism.
Many a times, therefore, when he is charged by a section of critics, as
a painter of decorations, I am sure he must be feeling happy inside and
laughing mirthfully. Designer Baby, as he rightly calls it, is a saga, a narrative
of an absurd repetition, a gemination deliberately effected to achieve an
effect of a rhetoric, a ploce to gain its special emphasis. He began his
narrative in 2004 producing a few canvasses of these babies and then till
today his ‘factory‘ of making babies has not been shut down. He refers to
his studio as a factory, not exactly in the same way how Andy Worhole
called it; May be something similar to what Hirst practices. The ‘studio
factory’ has several craftsmen each possessing special skills, who work
together to produce the design into a piece of art. He produced several
hundreds of them in the form of paintings and sculptures in last ten years.
The beauty of an art object is vested in several factors,one of them is its not
being what it is called or what it is seen as. Placing a smoking pipe in front
of you and not calling it a pipe is one of the extreme examples. Chintan
employs the same principle in more dramatic way. Whenever we have
encountered his Baby, the first response of the viewer is of that, it is not
a baby. It does look like a baby however has been consciously deprived of
its babyness. So what we have before us is a baby, that does not read as a
baby- A baby without a baby in it.
First its supersize alienates it from its being a baby, then comes sometimes
an army or a swarm of supersized baby like objects coloured in bright gold
or silver, bearing images of ancient miniature paintings showing animals,
gods, goddesses, couples copulating, Kings hunting, or women dancing so
on and so forth. Each baby having a oversized head on its shoulders, busy
doing some meaningless act and wearing a cold, demonically beautiful
and therefore discomforting smile on its face greets the viewer to its world
of wicked absurdities. His babies not just surprise you, they create a subtle
sense of fear, ringing an alarm in your senses that something unnatural is on
your way to meet you.
Each baby is produced out of a calculated computer program, which
facilitates artist’s ability to bring about numerous and subtle anatomical
changes without disturbing its overall appearance as a baby. Therefore the
viewer experiences an aberrant and anomalous movement (in the baby as
an art object before him) which is capable of producing even a vicarious
pleasure or a feeling of an urgent anxiety.
Each movement is mechanical, each gesture is coded with robotic appearance
and each baby representing an alien extraterrestrial being is what Chintan
wants us to encounter with?
Interestingly Chintan’s each baby is a male child. It playfully brandishes its
male genitals. Question is why does he not create a female form of baby?
One of the explanations has its roots in Chintan’s political position and
the other originates from the indian mythological traces that he might be
carrying with him.
Hybrid Trends, Seoul artcenter in Korea
Rajstan, the region from where chintan comes from is known for a high
number of female foeticides. If a child is identified as a female while doing
sonographic tests many families abort the foetus itself. Many incidents are
reported where new born baby daughters are destroyed by the families in
most gruesome manner by drowning or poisoning.
Chintan had devoted a separate large solo show coupled with a performance
to underline the evils of patriarchy and female foeticides. In this sense of
social practices, Chintan’s emotional world has no place for a female (child).
The demand for a male child and its delivery through medical science and
genetics by charging huge price in terms of money and in terms of resources
might have made him create a beautifully ugly and mechanically insane
unending narrative of a male Designer Baby.
The second reason can be mythological. One of The most popular indian
Gods, across the casts, the creeds and classes, that has even crossed indian
borders to reach and spread in western world is Krishna. The popular
household image of Krishna as a child, standing, creeping, crawling or
dancing, killing, playing or suckling, swimming, jumping, stealing, or playing
flute and even wearing a female clothing to look like a drag queen is found
everywhere and all over in India. They are worshiped and celebrated forms.
Krishna as a super child is an accepted cultural form. We do find its mirror
images further deformed and reformed in the construction of the designer
babies that he makes.
Hybrid Trends, Seoul artcenter in Korea
Several Gigantic and phantasmagoric or even pythonesque forms of gods
and demons have been appearing in various Indian temples and shrines. They
are celebrated, masks of surreal faces are worn and dances are performed as
rituals, supersize human forms are symbols for worship. Like any other Indian
Chintan too grew up with them. His creative urge and energy transformed
them into various new objects, one of them is Designer Baby.
(Sanjeev Khandekar is a well known Indian visual artist, poet & writer. He
lives and works at Mumbai. Here is his response to Chintan’s works. Sanjeev
Khandekar thanks Smita Ray for her help in editing his response.)
Solo show, Museum of Contemporary art in Taipei, Taiwan
BIOGRAPHY / BİYOGRAFİ
Born18th August 1972, Partapur, Rajasthan,
India. He lives and works in New Delhi.
EDUCATION / EĞİTİM
1997 MFA (Painting) Faculty of Fine Arts,
Baroda. Gujarat, India.
1995 BFA (Painting) Faculty of Fine Arts,
Baroda. Gujarat, India.
Founder of the Artists initiative ‘Sandarbh’ in
2003. Sandarbh is a non-profit initiative providing
new contexts by organising workshops and
residencies mostly in rural India. After a successful
decade, Sandarbh is bridging Urban and rural
contexts.
AWARDS / ÖDÜLLER
2014 Artrist of the year award, by Hello
House of Fame awards, India.
2008 Taj Gourav India.
2005 Awarded Charles Wallace Foundation
Award for a residency In Bristol UK for
2000-1Gadi schloarship, NLKA, New Delhi.
1998 Rajasthan lalit kala Academy for
out standing drawing in all India
drawing exhibition.
1995-97 Rajasthan lalit kala Academy for out
standing Painting in annual exhibition
1997 All inida Avantika art exhibition,
New Delhi.
1996 Gujerat lalit kala academy for
outstanding panting in the annual
exhibition.
1996 S.C.Z.C.C. for outstanding panting in
the annual exhibition,
Nagpur, Maharastra.
Museum collections
/ MÜZE KOLEKSİYONLARI
• Roundabout collection, Tel Aviv Museum
• Museum of Contemporary Art,Taipei ,Taiwan
• Seoul City collection, Korea
• Royal academy of fine art,Copenhagen
• Mori art museum collection, Tokyo,Japan
• Pompidou museum collection ,Paris,France
• Moma Museum Collection , New York
40
Private collections
/ ÖZEL KOLEKSİYONLAR
• Beth. Rudin de Woody collection,
New York, Whitney Museum board member
• David Teplitsky and Peggy Scott collection,
New Zealand
• Natalie and Lucien Seroussi collection Paris
• Jean Pierre Salanic, collection Paris
• Alain Elcabas, collection Paris
• Prajit Dutta collection ,New York
• Rajshree Pathy , collection New DElhi
• Mukesh and Neeta Ambani collection ,Mumbai
• Micky Tiroche collection, London
SOLO EXHIBITIONS / KİŞİSEL SERGİLER
2014 Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron Redux,
Gallery Espace. New Delhi. India.
2010 Nature God, Sakshi Gallery, Taipei.
Taiwan
2009 Mistake, Inda Gallery, Budapest,
Hungary
2009 Khatti Mithi, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai,
India
2009 Iconic shrine, Gallery Soulflower and
Roundabout, Jaipur, India
2008 Mistake, Aicon Gallery, London, India
2008 Pet Shop, Ashish Balram Nagpal
Galleries, Mumbai, India
2008 New Indians, Gallery Seroussi Natalie,
Paris, France.
2008 Metastasis of signs, Gallery Espace,
New Delhi, India
2007 Tentuaa Dabaa Do (Kill her)…,
Jawahar Kala Kendra, Jaipur, India
2006 Mutants, Sarjan Art Gallery, Baroda,
India
2006 Maya, Ashish Balram Nagpal Gallery,
Mumbai, India
2006 Clone Vithalla, Ashish Balram Nagpal
Gallery, Mumbai, India
2004 Designer Babies, Ashish Balaram
Nagpal Gallery, Mumbai, India
2003 New Breed/ Hybrid, Jehangir Art
Gallery, Mumbai. India
2002 Commemorative Stamps, Ashish
Balram Nagpal Gallery, Mumbai
and Jawahar Kala Kendra, Jaipur,
India.
1999 So What, The Fine Art Company,
Mumbai, India
1998 This has been done before, Shahjehan
Art Gallery, New Delhi, India
1996 Desirable Objects, Leela Kempenski
Art Gallery, Bombay, India
PERFORMANCES / PERFORMANSLAR
2014 “Black current” at caves in Nosvas,
Hungary.
2010 “Silent Protest” a collaborative
performance with farmers of
Hatholiapada village, Rajasthan. India.
2012 “Monkey Business” site specific
performances. Jaipur. India.
2012 2012 2011 2010 2010 2009
2006
2006
2005
2005
“Force” site specific performances.
Neerja Modi School. Jaipur. India.
“Fear-control-punishment” a
collaborative performance.
3331 Arts Chiyoda. Tokyo. Japan.
Fucking Hell, Produced during
residency organised by Hybrid project.
San Salvador.
“Vagad Tea Stall” a Site specific
Collaborative performance.
Partapur. India.
“mix match” a performance
produced in performance festival.
EX TERESA, Mexico
“Memory of a dead car” Parformance
Belper, Derbishire, UK
I want to be an international artist,
solo performance Seoul Art Center,
Seoul, Korea
“Public Sculpture” Solo Performance,
part of a workshop in collaboration
with Asa Sonjasdotter,
The Royal Academy of Fine Arts in
Copenhagen,Denmark and
Ven Island, Sweden.
You Have to decide’ Solo Performance,
Chiksardar,Romania.
Baar Baar Har Baar Kitni Baar?,
Installation and Performance,
Sarjan Art Gallery, Baroda, India
VIDEO / VIDEO
2014 “Silent Protest”
2014 “Strong Gaze and blind eyes”
2012 TokyoNama
2008 “Silence”
2009 New Indian Porn
PROJECTS-INSTALLATIONS
/ PROJELER-ENSTALASYONLAR
2013 “children library” a sculptural
installation part of 16th International
Sculpture Symposium In I Icheon.
S.Korea.
2010 “A memorial in memory of a dead car”,
Garten Kunstsommer,
Wiesbaden, Germany
2010 “Iconic Shrine” A special public
sculpture project part of Finding
India, Museum Of contemporary Art
(MOCA Taipei). Taiwan
2010 “Car Garden”, Nature Art Biennale,
Yatoo, Korea
2008 “Kai Awase” Nature Art Exhibition,
Abiko Japan.
2008 “Keep drawing” Curated by Chintan
Upadhyay, Gallery ESPACE,
New Delhi.
2008 Curated Sandarbh US, Moultry,
Georgia, USA.
2007 “Keep drawing” conceptualised by
Chintan Upadhyay,
Pandol Art Gallery, Mumbai.
2007
2008
2006
2004
2003
2003
2002
2000
1995
Social – mental - environmental,
Workshop on art and ecology,
Sparwasser HQ, Berlin
“Clone Vitthala” A Sculptural
installation part of Asian Art Biennale,
Taichung,Taiwan
Umbilical cord, a collaborative project
with bamboo craftsmen,
Partapur, Rajasthan, India
Conkers, Installation Project at
Spike Island, Bristol, UK
Made in China, a collaborative
installation with Hema Upadhyay,
Chemould Art Gallery, Mumbai, India
Post Card project with Hema
Upadhyay, was a part of
Parthenogenesis. Curated by Gary
Carsley, Ivan Dougherty Gallery,
Sydney, Australia
Floating Thoughts, Interactive site
specific installation, Brisbane, Australia
Objects of Desire, collaboration with
Hema Upadhyay, Art and
Technology, Ideas and Images II,
NGMA, Bombay, India
Circa Early Seventies, Faculty of
Fine Arts, Baroda, India
SELECTED GROUP SHOWS
/ SEÇİLMİŞ GRUP GÖSTERİLER
2011 ROUNDABOUT City Gallery
Wellington. New Zealand and Tel Aviv
Museum of Art Israel.
2011 “Roots in the Air, Branches Below”
San Jose Museum of Art. USA
2010 “mix match” a performance
produced in performance festival.
EX TERESA, Mexico
2010 Finding India, MOCA Taipei. Taiwan
2009 Lo Real Maravilloso: Marvelous Reality,
Gallery Espace, New Delhi.
Exhibited in LKA, New Delhi, India
2009 Finding India, Seoul Convention
Centre, Seoul, Korea
2009 Text-Context, Hungarian Academy of
Fine Arts, Budapest, Hungary
2009 Spectrum 2009: Indian art at Abu Dhabi, Emirates Palace,
Abu Dhabi, UAE
2008 Arco art fair, Gallery Espace,
New Delhi, India
2008 The Ethics of encounter: Contemporary
Art from India and Thailand, Gallery
Soulflower, Bangkok, Thailand
2008 Indiavata, Sun Contemporary, Seoul,
Korea
2008 Link, Sakshi Art Gallery, Mumbai,
Mumbai
2008 Asian Art Biennale, Taichong,Taiwan
2007 Beijing Art Fair, Beijing, China
2007 Here & Now: Contemporary voices
from India, Grosvenor Gallery,
London, UK
2007 Sandarbh, Artist workshop, Baroda,
India
2007 Hybrid trends, Seoul Art Center,
Seoul, Korea
2007 International artist workshop by Vyom
Art gallery, Jawahar Kala Kendra,
Jaipur, India
2006 Satyagraha: a group exhibition by
South African and Indian Artists,
Travancore art gallery, New Delhi,
India and Kizo Art Gallery, Durban,
South Africa.
2006 Pink shop, part of Hybrid Trends, an
Indo Korean Show Curated by Isang
Song, Seoul Art Center, Seoul, Korea
2006 Bombay Maximum City, Lille 3000,
Lille, France
2006 I am a slut, a collaborative Video
and performance with Amit Kekre,
Gallery Beyond, Mumbai, India
2006 Art Tap, an interactive site-specific
workshop, Island of Kakkathruthu,
Kashi Art Gallery, Cochin, India
2006 KAAM, Arts India Gallery, New York, USA
2006 KAAM, Organized by Arts India West,
St. Palo Alto, California, USA
2006 KAAM, Kitab Mahal, Mumbai, India
2006 Annual show, Sakshi Art Gallery,
Mumbai, India
2005 India/Australia cultural and regional
exchange. Curated by Melissa Waters.
KikArts Gallery, COCA, Perth, Australia
2005 Present-Future, National Gallery of
Modern Art, Bombay, India
2005 Indian Contemporary Art, Chelsea
College of Art, London, UK
2005 Are we like this only?, Rabindra
Bhavan, Vadhera art Gallery,
New Delhi, India
2004 Bombay Boys, Palette Art Gallery,
New Delhi, India
2004 Charles Wallace Foundation awards,
British Council, New Delhi, India
2004 Concepts and Ideas, CIMA Art Gallery
Pvt. Ltd., Kolkatta, India
2004 Gallery 27, Oslo, Norway
2004-03 Portraits of a Decade, CIMA Art
Gallery Kolkatta & Jehangir
Art Gallery, Mumbai, India
2004-03 Dots and Pixels: Digital media,
Sumukha Art Gallery, Banglore,
Gallery Espace, New Delhi, India
2004 Red, Palette Art Gallery, New Delhi, India
2004 Bombay 17, Kashi Art Gallery, Cochin,
India
2003 Parthenogenesis, Ivan Dougherty
Gallery, Sydney, Australia
2003 Corresponding Latitudes, A Cross
Cultural Collaborative Exhibition of
Indian and Australian artists, Jawahar
Kala Kendra, Jaipur, India
2002 Brahma to Bapu: Icons & Symbols in
Indian art, Habitat centre New Delhi &
2002
2001
2000
1999
1999
1997
1997
1997
CIMA gallery, Kolkatta, India
Quotable Stencil, Tao art gallery,
Bombay, India
Annual show, Gallery Wren, Sydney,
Australia.
Sic An Audio-visual Installation, The
Fine Art Company, Bombay, India
Mumbai Metaphor, Tao Art Gallery,
Bombay, India
Wall Paper, Lakeeren Art Gallery,
Bombay, India
Class of 1997, Lakeeren Art Gallery,
Bombay, India
Harmony show, Reliance group of
Industries, Bombay, India
50 yr. of Indian Independence, All
India Fine Arts and Crafts Society
(New Delhi), at Ravi Shankar Rawal
Bhavan, Ahmedabad, India
SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
/ SEÇİLMİŞ YAYINLAR
2007 Politics of Real by Sanjeev Khandekar,
www.mattersofart.com.
2007 ‘Tentua Dabaa Do’ Johny ML,
www.artconcerns.com.
2005 Bhavna Kakker ’ Baar Baar Har Baar Kitni Baar? Art and Deal magazine.
2004 Himanshu Desai,Ashes to Ashes,
Dust to Dust, A metamorphosis from
Rural to Urban Mumbai
2004 Gary Carsley, Karma Chemeleons,
Art India, Art magazine of India
2004 Georgina Maddox, Remixed culture,
The Indian Express
2004 Global vs local debate, Delhi, Mumbai,
Bengal art juxtaposed, Kolkatta,
The Telegraph
2004 Rita Datta, Bold assertion of urban
identity, The telegraph, Kolkatta
2004 Gary Carsley, Antediluvian Synesthesia,
Made in China, (Catalogue)
2003 The evolving face of Indian art,
The telegraph, Kolkatta
2003 Georgina Maddox, Pin-Up Artists,
Indian Express
2003 Gary Carsley and Elizabeth Ashburn,
Parthenogenesis, (Catalogue)
2003 Amit Kekre’ Chintan Upadhyay’s ‘HE’
The journey, New Breed/Hybrid
(Catalogue) Mumbai
2003 Himanshu Desai’ ‘Kitsch is Impossible’
Commemorative Stamps (Catalogue)
Mumbai
1999 Vaibhav Vishal, ’This has been done
before’ (Catalogue) Baroda
41
www.beyazart.com
Sergi Koordinatörü / Exhibition Coordinator
Eser Öztunalı
Küratör / Curator
Soufiane Bensabra
Katalog Metni / Catalog Text
Sanjeev Khandekar, Tuba Esen
Tasarım / Design
Gürkan Kızılsakal
Baskı / Print
Bilnet Matbaacılık
Biltur Basım Yayın ve Hizmet A.Ş.
Dudullu Org.San.Böl. 1. Cadde No:16
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