Zones of Convergence / Divergence

Online exhibition featuring:

Arshad Hakim
Mithra Kamalam
Puja Mondal
Sabyasachi Bhattacharjee
Umesh Singh

12 September to 31 October 2020


. Arshad Hakim               . Mithra Kamalam               . Puja Mondal               . Sabyasachi Bhattacharjee                . Umesh Singh 




Arshad Hakim




still image 1: at the overturn, 2019,
digital video, 17 min 55 sec., 1/3+AP


still image 2: at the overturn.


still image 3: at the overturn.





https://vimeo.com/228544716       https://vimeo.com/228541296



still images: It was high noon and I slept with the Sun
(After Blade Runner, 1982), 2017, digital video, 3 min 40 sec; 1 min., 1/3+AP



About the Artworks

My work takes form in film, video, photographs and texts. My concern lies in describing effects of narratives that are based on overturns, through descriptions and instructions that allow myself, and in-turn the viewer to locate themselves within these dislodging narratives. Points through which these descriptions and instructions formulate themselves and are references of, range from sci-films, mythological narratives and political incidents, which become fulcrums. They become sources from which narratives are extracted and reconfigured to form connections, pointing towards how subjectivities function and are constantly renegotiated, in order to produce a condition of alterity in my own viewpoint and in turn the viewers.

In At the overturn, the quotidian images are structured with sections, hesitation, combustion, nihilism, parasitism, relationship of the parasite to its host-where each image functions within its corresponding sections, generating unfamiliar-ness to very quotidian images. The voice-over oscillates between an interior monologue, a dialogue and as declaration through which one navigates various sensations produced by the images.

Through describing effects of dislodgement, for me, it provides a more nuanced understanding of the conditions within which the narrative is located, of the overturn within the narrative and the conditions surrounding them. By analysing them and speculating on them, I produce varying degrees of sensations that point to how these come forth and possible navigation through them. As a result, my work becomes triggers though which I transmit these sensorial effects to myself and in turn the viewer, with the intention of generating a new mode for sensing what is around us. As a method for my work, I start with fragments that I gravitate too, unearthing propositions and provocations within them. When a provocation emerges, it becomes a play in figuring out the connections with other sources, when to amplify it and when to subsume it.  

My initial impulse of making It was high noon and  I slept with the  Sun was to take off from Blade Runner1982 by Ridley Scott, which is an adaptation of Do Androids Dream of Electronic Sheep by Philip.K.Dick. There is a sequence within the movie where Roy (replicant) confronts Dr. Tyrell (Head of the company who manufactures these replicants), where Roy asks the doctor to extend his life (according to the plot the replicants are very human-like.


Their life is cut short to 4 years in order to prevent any revolt from them). The scene is a classic example of an existentialist/ Sci-film noir – where the replicant asks for more life, eventually killing the doctor by kissing him. An artificial being asking for more life and consequently what does it mean to ask for more life? Why does the existential question keep popping up various times and how does it address the time that we live in now? These were some of the things I had been thinking about, especially living during a hyper-media time. Do we constantly live in-between pastiche and schizophrenia? The second video is a found footage taken from the NASA archives. Its captures solar flares and magnetic waves emitting from the sun for a period of a month, which has been compressed to a minute.


I gravitate towards film and particularly essayist films, as it allows for contradictions to be put forth, puts my own subjective positions to the fore while allowing room for analytic responses. As a formal concern, it allows for varying degrees synthesis of image, sound and the written/spoken word. The essay as a form also lends itself to work with fragmented thoughts and sensations, to bend time and narrative to suit fragmentation, that functions independently and sometimes in relation to other fragments.



About the Artist

Arshad Hakim (b. 1992) attained his BFA from Faculty of Fine Arts, M. S. University of Baroda (2014) and MFA from the Shiv Nadar University (2016). He has participated in several camps and residencies. Hakim was a fellow at Ashkal Alwan - The Lebanese Association of Plastic Arts (2017-18). His recent exhibitions include, 'A Voyage of Seemingly Propulsive Speed and an Apparent Absolute Stillness', Gallery Ark, Vadodara (2020); View India, Landskrona Foto Festival, Landskrona, Sweden (2019); ‘Critical Constellations’, Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art, New Delhi (2019); ‘As We become’ curated by Meenakshi Thirukode, New Delhi  (2018); Open Studios at Ashkal Alwan, Beirut (2018); and ‘Watermelon, Fish and Half Ghost’ Swiss Cottage Gallery, London (2017). He has been a resident at #1 Shanti Road, Bangalore and in 2017 he was invited to a summer school at ZHdK in Zurich, co-organized by Manifesta 11. He has been published by the Arts of the Working Class, Berlin in 2019. Hakim lives and works in Bengaluru






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