‘Absence of Presence’ at AF Trivandrum

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“The most urgent crisis that we face today, is not that the notion of democracy is under threat, but that we remain mute spectators. Hate rhetoric, communal and caste politics, and aggressive market forces dominate our landscape. Can the artist then, remain a bystander?” It is within this framework that Alliance Française de Trivandrum hosted the visual installation Absence of Presence by the Alappuzha-based artist Blodsow V S from May 19, 2018 to June 2, 2018. The band Karnatriix performed on the opening night after the installation was inaugurated by François Grosjean (Director, AF Trivandrum).

The artist Blodsow V S in action

The artist Blodsow V S in action

The aim of the installation was to hold up a mirror to the lackadaisical and somewhat fragmented attitude of people towards different social ills. The artist completely covered the walls, floor, and roof of the AF Trivandrum Art Gallery with newspapers. These dailies are an important source of information for a vast cross-section of society. The artist wished to highlight the fact that despite being aware of the problems plaguing our world, we have become desensitised and choose to wilfully ignore the real issues at hand. Absence of Presence seeks to address the need to be proactive in these scenarios and to question the status quo.

The installation 'Absence of Presence' at the Art Gallery of AF Trivandrum

The installation ‘Absence of Presence’ at the Art Gallery of AF Trivandrum

Absence of Presence employs images influenced by the works of artists like Barbara Kruger and Keith Arnatt whose technique consisted of deploying bold phrases on images. In doing so, the artist wants to emphasise the fact that every voice which chooses to remain silent spells the death knell of a pluralistic society. Through these works, the artist hopes that people will look beyond the bubbles they have built for themselves and stop feigning ignorance about the chaos that is around and within them. In doing so, the installation is a true call for action which aims to shake off the collective apathy that has settled on society!

A brief glimpse into the installation can be found below :

Siddharth Bhatt

Rédaction, AF Magazine Inde-Népal

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Directeur de publication : Délégation Générale de la Fondation Alliance Française en Inde et au Népal

Rédacteur en chef : Laurent Elisio Bordier

Rédacteur/Coordinateur national : Siddharth Bhatt

Rédacteurs, contributeurs : Guillaume, Abhirami, Alexandre, Chintan, Cléa, David, Eleonore, Elie, Kanika, Karine, Nita, Thomas, Malvika, Marie-Joëlle, Meera, Mayuri, Mitushi, Alice, Prutha, Romain, Ritika, Manas, Supriya ...