MANJIT BAWA, Untitled, 2004, Oil on canvas, 142 x 168 cm
OPENING RECEPTION: January 15, 2005, 7 pm – 10 pm
INTRODUCTION: Dr. Britta Schmitz, Hamburger Bahnhof, Museum für Gegenwart, Berlin
EXHIBITION DURATION: January 18 – March 5, 2005
OPENING HOURS: Tues.-Sat., 11 – 6 pm
LOCATION: Sophienstraße 16, 10178 Berlin
ALEXANDER OCHS GALLERIES BERLIN | BEIJING in cooperation with SAKSHI GALLERY BOMBAY | INDIA will be showing beginning in January 2005 the third part of the exhibition trilogy IN TRANSIT. This successful collaborative project has provided a representative cross-section of central positions of contemporary Indian art, and now comes to a close with the presentation of works by MANJIT BAWA und RAVINDER REDDY.
Heroic sagas about Krishna serve as MANJIT BAWA's preferred repertoire of images. Fascinated by the myths and stories of his home country ever since childhood, Bawa's painting is still saturated with motifs from ancient legends. His figures move in weightless spaces filled with a depth of color, giving them a sense of placelessness that points not only to remembrance, but also loneliness. They indicate a high level of intellectualization in which MANJIT BAWA represents ancient tales using his own visual metaphors, borne by great sensuality. Alluding to Indian miniatures from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, his work seems to provide a way out of an overly rationalized and reified present.
MANJIT BAWA was born in 1941 in Dhuri, Punjab. He studied painting at the School of Art in Delhi, where he still lives and works today. Enjoying international recognition as one of the most important contemporary Indian artists, he has also worked as a curator, musician, and actor. His works can be found in many esteemed collections around the world, including the National Gallery of Modern Art in Delhi, Punjabi University Museum, and the World Bank in Washington, D.C.
RAVINDER REDDY presents greater than life-size sculptures and monumental busts made of fiberglass. His figures—usually female—are all naked, their skin covered with gold leaf. Their dimensions and gold nudity, the stylized breasts and black contoured eyes give the female figures the look of powerful fertility goddesses from the Indian art canon. At the same time, they possess an immediate, everyday natural quality: the deep red mouths of the women, their painted fingernails, and especially their individual bodily forms and easygoing postures point to real, self-confident, and proud contemporary women. In RAVINDER REDDY's sculptures, the classical visual language of India not only enters an unexpected synthesis with Greek, Egyptian, or even Central American traditions, but also develops a vivid, current image of humanity.
RAVINDER REDDY, born in 1956 in Suryapet, Andhra Pradesh, studied sculpture at the University of Baroda (Faculty of Fine Arts) and Goldsmiths College in London. After holding a position from 1984–1990 as assistant director at the Kanoria Centre for Arts in Ahmedabad, he now teaches in the Department for Fine Arts at Andhra University, Vishakapatnam. His works can be found in numerous private and public collections, such as Richmond's Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, London's Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Queensland Art Gallery in Brisbane, Australia.
SAKSHI GALLERY BOMBAY is one of the most important galleries in India. With a surface area of 3000 square meters, housed in a space redesigned by Rahul Mehrotra in a former textile mill in Bombay, the gallery also houses an academic center, featuring a library and a data bank that are open to the public. In addition to showing the work of the most important contemporary Indian artists, SAKSHI GALLERY BOMBAY has also been the first to present the work of younger, less established artists, organizing exhibitions in Hong Kong, Singapore, Delhi, Calcutta, and New York, as well as various itinerant exhibitions.
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