India: Public Places, Private Spaces

When we think of art from India, most of us probably conjure images of Bollywood films or Hindu deities with four arms. This massive show of contemporary Indian photography and video art at MIA promises to be eye-opening, playing with some Indian traditions and stereotypes and exploding others. Twenty-eight of India's most prominent artists will exhibit more than 100 works—a new-media travelogue through the country's rich and complex culture. Several artists display large-scale documentary photos of modern Indian civilization, from the vibrant and often impoverished street life of the major cities to the living conditions of rural farmers. One of the highlights will be Navjot Altaf's wall-sized video installation Lacuna in Testimony. Superimposed over a mesmerizing background of ocean waves washing onto shore, a grid of constantly changing photos depicts fragmentary scenes from the Gujarat riots of 2002, all reflected in 72 mirrors laid out on the floor before it, creating an immersive experience that is at once beautiful and haunting.
Oct. 26-Jan. 18, 2008

 
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