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Times of India | arth – art for earth by manav gupta | September 24th, 2018

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Manav Gupta, art, artist, modern art, Rain, 2018, excavations in hymns of clay | installations

r  a  i  n

Manav Gupta, art, artist, modern art, Rain, 2018, excavations in hymns of clay | installations

e x c a v a t e d    m u s e u m   :   h y m n s   o f   c l a y

“Excavations in Hymns of Clay” is a suite of environmental art installations by Manav Gupta that he creates as his Museum of Clay weaving all of them with a storyline and poetry. It is an evolving ,site specific and dynamic engagement with the space it has an interface with – whether it be the Travelling or the Permanent editions. As a global public art project. The artist deploys the quintessentially Indian potter’s produce of clay objects such as the earthen lamps (“diyas”), local cigar (“chillam”), earthen cups (“kulhad”)  to transform their individual identity into metaphors and idioms of  sustainability, context, perception and treatment as he conceptualises and creates large scale avant-garde works; using the rural Indian pottery meant for everyday use, in mass numbers, he  deconstructs their age old existence as units to make them lend themselves to another form, be it in a Duchamp like inverted concept or simply rendering them formless. 

They stun the viewer with the artist’s originality of thought as he produces a cutting edge contemporary language whose  global vocabulary is  derived from the “local”. In his “excavations” of the spiritual philosophy of sustainable living as espoused in Indian scriptures, he executes an organic engagement of art with architecture and space to  explore it in its universal context.

While one is lured intelligently within the sensuousness of the ‘Waterfront’, ‘River of clay’, or ‘Rain’ letting one feel the ethereal, emotive content like that of an epic story, Manav’s statement is dipped gently into the essence of the Indian vedic practices to subtly bring to light the repository of solutions that the ancient way of life could offer in today’s context of sustainable development and  current issues around rivers like the Ganga.

Whether it be the latest “R a i n ” or the “River waterfront” ‘Time Machine’, ‘Bee-hive Garden ’, ‘River Bed of Love’, or the ‘Noah’s Ark’ the fragility of clay juxtaposed with the limitedness of the “cup of life” question the paradigm of Time and human engagement with it in today’s rapidly mechanised and constructed consumerist engagement with earth’s resources.

The works, conceptualised, created and constructed taking into consideration the venue – is a sensitive natural interface with the ambience, seeking  to engage  fresh and locally relevant dialogues and questions that audiences can have with the art and within themselves.  

t  h  e      b  e  d      o  f       l  o  v  e
Manav Gupta, Clay, Bed of Love, Love, Public art, Global, modern art, installations
t  i  m  e      m  a  c  h  i  n  e
Manav Gupta, Clay, Time Machine, Time, Love, Public art, Global, modern art, installations