When a clay pot took different shapes

Monday, Nov 23, 2015,14:08 IST By Metrovaartha A A A

New Delhi | The ever modest clay pot has been given an image make over transforming itself from being ‘a thing of utility to a thing of beauty’ in a new exhibition of contemporary ceramic art titled ‘Vessel Redefined: An ode to the craft of clay’ recently launched here. With a total of nine artists across the country participating in the exhibition, each work offers an unfolding of a complete different story of the vessel. The show is being hosted at the ‘Terraforma Art Gallery’ of Taj Vivanta in Dwarka.

For a ceramic artist making a small pot on the wheel has been the first introduction to the clay for ages. If nothing else, making of a pot was always an option. This show reflects artists’ subjective interpretation of the humble container. Each form contains untold stories, says the curator Nehal Rachh Nandi, who also participated as an artist in the exhibition. Having far too many layers in their work, each artist though working on the same lines notably maintains a uniqueness to their work.

Each of us, in our work, have developed a language which is distinct from the other. So when you see the work here, you’ll see different perspectives coming into play. Each artist see the same thing differently and that is what makes the end result so unique, says ceramic artist Mudita Bhandari, who presents her interpretations in terracotta. Though contemporary ceramic art is relatively new to India and is yet to spread its wings.

The curator Nandi, was happy with the pace India is moving in this form of art. We don’t have a rich history in ceramic art. It started very late, 60s or 70s probably. But we have achieved a lot. I am seeing more and more people engaging to this art. We are have full fledged art exhibitions and workshops. This is a giant leap, says Nandi.

The curator says it feels strange to be both the curator as well as the artist but soon realised that her work justifies being here. I have been working on the same topic for past 15 years. I felt it was important to display my work for the show. As a curator not doing that would have been wrong on my part. And moreover there is no rule against it, she adds. The two-month long exhibition is set to conclude on on January 19, 2016.