Cinema City project engages with the urban chroniclers in visual art practice in the search of the City that produces Cinema. The invited artists have brought in their nuanced preoccupations with the city into the euphoric agenda of the Cinema City project.
Untitled: Sculptural Installation, 100 objects fixed and rotating on a 8 x 4 feet table
The imagination of the city of dizzying speed and escalating desire is replicated in an installation of moving wooden objects that are shaped in the form of firecrackers and painted/printed in the idiom of matchbox labels. The objects also resemble threaded spindles, the base for production in the textile industry – the erstwhile nerve centre of the city.
The high speed of movement makes the objects ephemeral and yet desirable, much like matinee idols who are often referred to as patakas – firecrackers.
14 Stations : Oil, acrylic with marble dust and crackle medium on canvas, Sizes: 42 x 96 and 51 x 63 inches
Station signboards along the Mumbai Central Railway Line are painted with portraits of popular Bollywood villains.
Between Ghatkopar (the resident of the artist) and CST (Victoria Terminus) there are 13 stations – the artist has added a new one to the list.
Of Panorama: D Cycling Interactive video installation; video projection, two cameras, lights and a gym cycle.
This is a tribute to the convention of painted backdrop in early cinema. Set up like an indoor studio floor, the installation has a screen on which an animation film of painted cityscape is projected. As a gym cycle, placed in front of the screen, gets activated by a spectator/cyclist, two cameras shoot the cyclist and throw the image back on the screen. The composite image makes the cyclist a protagonist of the road movie.
So Near Yet So Far: Sound Installation on Telephone; 3 listening stations with a PBX set, public telephone and STD booth
Like the city and the cinema, and so many other institutions/symbols of modernity, the advent of the telephone allowed you to be somewhere you were not. Disembodying the voice from the body, and embodying the body in the voice, the telephone became the enchanted glass through which to cross boundaries of many kinds: social, gendered, sexual. While in a way this reflected the experience of cinema and of the city, it was also reflected in the cinema itself, with love, sex, danger and the forbidden – often expressed around telephones, telephone operators, women, machines and modern girls.
The listening stations and instruments provide both the physical experience the machines and their location allows, along with the textures and narratives the audio tracks are shaped into.
Listen to a track of the sound installation:
Return of the Phantom Lady (Sinful City): Performance Photography in colour photographs, each 20 x 30 inches
This is the second adventure of the Phantom Lady, a sequel to Phantom Lady or Kismet (1996-98), a black and white thriller shot in the film noir style, where the artist played the roles Phantom lady and her doppelganger, the lost twin sister, the Vamp.
This time round, the Phantom Lady gets caught in a dark web of murder, intrigue and foul play in contemporary Mumbai. While rescuing an orphaned school girl, the Phantom Lady runs into the land mafia and their land grab operations and begins a chase through old film theatres, slums and new glass faced office blocks. Return looks at the new Mumbai.
Fetish Objects Museum: Objects-sculptures in glass boxes, multiple sizes
A museum display of fetish objects foregrounded by Bollywood. Various fetishes – human anatomy, garments, props, home décor, spoken words are made into sculptural objects casted in brass, copper and aluminum. These objects, along with sketches, scribbles, diaries and found images; are displayed in a museum look-alike setting.
A speculative museum of cinema in the post-cinema time.