PUBLIC ART GRANT 2007 | SHILPA GUPTA
FICA Public Art Grant 2007 was presented to the project titled Making Art Public by Shilpa Gupta. Mumbai-based artist Shilpa Gupta explores the idea of making art public and accessible to a wider and interested audience in this year-long project.
Shilpa Gupta explores the idea of making art public and accessible to a wider and interested audience in this year-long project in Timeout Mumbai, a popular magazine which features contemporary culture. Ten thousand art prints by current visual practitioners will be inserted in Timeout once a month for a one year period which the magazine’s 5000 subscribers can pull-out. Visual artists, photographers, a graphic novelist and an urban researcher will be invited to open up a discussion about contemporary visual production and language. Artists selected for the project include Anant Joshi, Chitra Venkataramani, Bharti Kher, and Jittish Kallat, Gulam Sheikh, and NS Harsha. While the immediate reaction to the prints will be difficult to gauge, Shilpa is hopeful that the project will have an afterlife, “when these images might stay in people’s everyday life -- in their drawers, get pinned up on their boards, or framed.”
As an artist, Shilpa is interested in understanding the role and function of art and its language. “This is something I explore in my own work, looking and working with structures to create and share works with people -- interactivity, new media, distribution, shifting meanings, etc. There is a lack of public interfaces -- simply criticizing [art] is not enough and therefore [I] slip into the role of a facilitator.” Her other public art projects include Aar Paar (1, 2, and 3 in collaboration with Pakistani artist Huma Mujli), a public art exchange between India and Pakistan where art was swapped between the two countries and shown in public spaces, at roadside tea stalls and paan shops, plastered on city walls and distributed as folded handouts; Blame, an interactive project in local trains; Yaddash-Double Dhamaka flyers at Andheri Station; and Spice Adventures, a children’s animation and game CD in collaboration with Majlis Production.