Exploring various shades of water

Symbolic act

The artist, who was also the performer for the evening, explored the possible relation between culture and nature.

Nature in this context was water that flows in Ganga. Shamla tried to portray one’s attitude towards nature – here the Ganga – which is sacred and liberating, yet subject to proliferating apathy because we take the river for granted.  Dressed in black and red, Shamla stood in front of the backdrop, with Lord Shiva painted on it, and many water bottles placed on the racks. Slowly the artist started to distribute these bottles to people who were watching her. After a while she simply packed the remaining bottles in a black bag and left the building. A group of enthusiasts who witnessed this piece were confused and in a daze. Nevertheless, there were a few who did try to understand her message. “At first, I too was wondering what she was upto but then I slowly understood that she was trying to use the space to question our hypocrisy towards the environment,” said Payal, who was there to watch the show.

For Rijo, another visitor, the piece made him question many things that exist in his surroundings. “It really makes one wonder and even question the various lables that man has attached to what is sacred and profane,” he added.

The note left by the artist, ‘I am a woman. Therefore I am a river. When the river speaks, the earth listens’, gave the audience a wonderful message.

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