A Mural on the Wall of a House, Jyoti Bhatt, c. 1981, Silver gelatin print, Image: H. 12.4 cm, W. 18.4 cm; Paper: H. 13.1 cm, W. 18.9 cm, PHY.03433, Museum of Art & Photography.
Sociologist DP Mukerji said “living tradition” is the “capacity for adjustment” which is the “measure of the vitality of traditions”. A few decades later, in 1987, artist KG Subramanyan wrote that the modern artist wishes “to be part of a living tradition, i.e. to be individual and innovative, without being an outsider in his own culture….” Two positions, separated by decades and disciplinary orientations.
In this talk, designer and art historian Annapurna Garimella, using Mukerjee and Subramanyan as bookends, will delve into how artists have approached traditions and art forms in India. Artists, for generations, have adopted textures, forms, colours, techniques, images, and labour from community-specific art forms into their own work, giving their practice and these traditions new meanings. In this talk, Garimella will uncover what life is possible for a tradition once it enters the studio.
The event is part of the larger programming for the exhibition Jyoti Bhatt: Time and Time Again.