Rhetorical Amendments to the [REDACTED]

Organized by Hive Voices
The Guild Art Gallery

MAP Office (Valerie Portefaix and Laurent Gutierrez),
SAHMAT/Ram Rahman
Sreshta Rit Premnath
Chelsea Rae Klein

18 June - 30 September, 2016

The Guild, Alibaug.



The Guild Art Gallery is pleased to present, Rhetorical Amendments to the [REDACTED], organized by Hive Voices, exhibiting the works of MAP Office (Valerie Portefaix and Laurent Gutierrez), Chelsea Rae Klein, SAHMAT/Ram Rahman and Sreshta Rit Premnath.

Rhetorical Amendments to the [REDACTED] takes as its aesthetic/performative gesture, redaction, staging both resistance and vulnerability. It mimics a gesture of surrender to the inevitability of power censoring voice, while turning self-redaction into a refusal to engage on power’s terms. The works in the exhibition in contrast, utilize aesthetic gestures, layering, proclaiming, informing, and witnessing, as a voice that speaks despite the ubiquity of censorship.

MAP Office’s video, Under the Umbrella is a witnessing of the Umbrella Revolution, a series of sit-in protests that took place in Hong Kong (HK) in 2014, protesting reforms to the electoral system that would have curtailed the rights of HK citizens to select their candidates for public office. MAP Office deftly records the protests as an assemblage of political, social and biopolitical bodies, activities, objects and spaces. The physical location of the camps on the main throughways of HK, forming a biopolitical infrastructure able to produce a communal reproduction of life, including food, and sanitation, echoing the island – as a protest camp, and the city itself - as a space for communal living.

Chelsea Rae Klein’s My Sweet Love, comprised of a three part video (Won't Stain My Soul, Boko for Bananagrams, and Abundance) addresses gender inequality in education and attempts to disarm the pervasive silencing of women and girls that is the result of the deprivation of the right to education.

SAHMAT and Rahman’s posters draw on India’s secular heritage engaging in important social and political debates. The posters indicative of a grassroots level engagement and activation, provide historical, cultural and political perspective.

Sreshta Rit Premnath’s To Destroy is Also to Make Visible, underlines the rhetoric of the masses with the ink of redaction and witness. The piece uses a video-still of Hindu fundamentalists vandalizing M.F. Husain’s Amadavadni Gufa to think about the status of an artwork at the moment of its destruction and the meanings generated by an image’s evacuated presence.

The exhibition concludes on Sunday, July 31 and will thereafter be exhibited on Hive’s website (www.hivevoices.org) for a limited period.


Hive Voices is a digital publishing platform that focuses on contemporary epistemologies and systems, image making and representation, and social and political action, utilizing these as integral and core functions in the making and remaking of narratives, the social contract and constituent power. Hive is Founder/Editor Renuka Sawhney and Narratives Editor Hira Cheema. (www.hivevoices.org)


MAP Office is a multidisciplinary platform devised by Laurent Gutierrez (1966, Casablanca, Morocco) and Valérie Portefaix (1969, Saint-Étienne, France). This duo of artists has been based in Hong Kong since 1996, working on physical and imaginary territories using varied means of expression. MAP Office projects have been exposed in over 100 exhibitions at prestigious venues including the MoMA and the Guggenheim Museum (New York), the Georges Pompidou Centre (Paris) and the Ullens Centre for Contemporary Art (Beijing), around 30 Biennales and Trienniales around the world with for example five contributions to the Venice Biennale in Art and Architecture (2000, 2003, 2007, 2008, 2010). Their cross-disciplinary practice has been the subject of a monograph, MAP OFFICE – Where the Map is the Territory (2011). MAP Office was the recipient of the 2013 edition of the Sovereign Asian Art Prize. (www.map-office.com)

Chelsea Rae Klein is the recipient of The San Francisco Arts Commission's Individual Artist Commission (2013-2014) and her projects have twice received award from The Zellerbach Family Foundation's Community Arts Grant (2011, 2014). Her work has recently been exhibited with The International ArtExpo in Venice at Palazzo Ca’ Zanardi, at Con Artist Gallery, The Cristin Tierney Gallery and Aperture Gallery in New York and at Select Fair and Art Place Wynwood during Art Basel, Maimi. She has received her Masters in Arts Politics/ Art and Public Policy from Tisch School of the Arts, NYU and a BA in Journalism with an emphasis on photojournalism. She currenlty lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.

Klein's work addresses concepts of the other, violence against women, learned male-role behaviors, the queer body and the body memory including the residual and internalized impact of forced silencing, hiding and violence. Incorporating new, appropriated and archival materials, her work traces invisible histories to reform an identity landscape largely inhabited but widely unseen. Interweaving traditional craft, storytelling and new media, works question dominant social and political constructs by asserting individual and collective memory, spinning a new history that reveals denied voicing and counters static and normative social identity constructs. (http://chelsearaeklein.com/)

SAHMAT Collective / Ram Rahman  has promoted the secular and pluralist culture and traditions of the sub-continent through converts, seminars, workshops, and exhibitions in different parts of the country, and has mounted several protest actions in support of freedom of expression. Animated by the urgent belief that art can propel change and that culture can reach across boundaries, Sahmat has offered a platform for an expansive group of artists and collaborators to present powerful works of art that defend freedom of expression and battle intolerance within India's often divisive political landscape.

Sahmat's projects are defined in part by their consistent stance against the threat of religious fundamentalism and sectarianism—known in South Asia as "communalism"—in public life. Collaborations have cut across class, caste, and religious lines and have involved artists, performers, scholars, and a wide array of other participants, such as the Hindu, Sikh, and Muslim auto-rickshaw drivers in the contest Slogans for Communal Harmony. Projects also have sought to counter political distortions to India's history, most notably in Sahmat's multifaceted response to the demolition of Babri Masjid in Ayodhya. In other cases, Sahmat has sought to celebrate India's cultural diversity and democratic ideals, engaging artists to create work that responds to ideas of national history and individual identity.

Sreshta Rit Premnath has had solo exhibitions at Kansas, New York; Galleryske, Bangalore; The Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis; Tony Wight Gallery, Chicago; Galerie Nordenhake, Berlin; Wave Hill, New York; Art Statements, Art Basel; as well as numerous group exhibitions at venues including Queens Museum, New York; YBCA, San Francisco; Galerie Balice Hertling, Paris; 1A Space, Hong Kong and Thomas Erben Gallery, New York. He is the founder and co-editor of the publication Shifter and co-organizes the ongoing Dictionary of the Possible. Premnath completed his BFA at The Cleveland Institute of Art, his MFA at Bard College, and has attended the Whitney Independent Study Program, Skowhegan and Smack Mellon. He has received grants from Art Matters and the Civitella Ranieri Foundation, and was awarded the Arthur Levitt Fellowship from Williams College. Based in Brooklyn, Premnath is Assistant Professor at Parsons, New York. (sreshtaritpremnath.com)

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