Trespassers and Translators
Project 88 is pleased to present Trespassers and Translators, an exhibition of new paintings by Amitesh Shrivastava. This is Shrivastava's first solo at Project 88.
The surfaces in Amitesh Shrivastava's works are permeable. He sets up an entry for the viewer's eye but the exits remain many. And whether the viewer's consciousness will emerge transformed, even by a few degrees, by this trip down the rabbit hole is anybody's guess. Landscapes are deceptively cheery, animals are falsely benign, hybrids are almost human and the mood is on a knife's edge between stifling and beatific. These elements in his works show the artist's deep love for the complexity of our human predicament – and contempt for easy categories in our text-fixated minds.
The life he soaks up from his current residence in Mumbai – with all its mediatization, clamour, categories, and migrants- swirls in his subconscious with his parallel life at his childhood home in Khairagarh, Chhattisgarh – with its animals, insects, stagnation and small miracles. They are each at once sepsis and salvation, feeding off each other- failing to mark territories. As a result, his consciousness and his works forever remain trespassers to themselves. The viewer is dragged to be a fellow trespasser into other subjectivities and ways of living, both bodily and mentally.
Shrivastava’s kaleidoscopic brush-strokes, surprisingly wide palette of colors and faux-naive ink markings, celebrate the precarity of trespassing - where one knows the lines well enough to pass off as the 'other' but one is never given a copy of the script.
Text by Sourav Roy