A Virtual Exhibition by Meghna Bhardwaj
22 Jan 2021 | 4:00 p.m.
Conceived in the context of the physical restrictions imposed by the pandemic, YARNING, a live exhibition attempts to define the meaning of ‘horizons’ - external and internal.
Created in collaboration with Susan Sentler, Alecia Neo, Zeekos Perakos and Rishabh Chaudhary, the exhibition was developed with the support of Artefact#2 Creative Residency, Dance Nucleus, Singapore. The exhibition premiered at Dance Nucleus as part of their event SCOPE in early December, 2021.
How to curate
This is a virtual exhibition/experiment and not a series of screenings! Please feel free to roam around while the following installations are playing in your individual spaces.
Here are a few ways you could set and wander through the installations on your own devices, which may include more than one device, that is, your TV screens, laptops, notepads, and phones, if you would like:
bearing witness to the knotting skies by Meghna Bhardwaj, and Hushweave by Zeekos Perakos
This is a combination of a silent film and two soundscapes. You are invited to play the film link with the sound cloud links playing on a separate minimised window. You may press shuffle so the two sounds play one after the other. Please note there are bits of silences in each of the two sounds, which means you need not worry at any point about minimizing the film window to check if the sound has stopped. It hasn’t! You can press play, and leave the sounds alone!
Do you remember the touch of a stitch? by Meghna Bhardwaj
This is a collection of visual essays. You may treat it like an edited volume of a book, wherein you could choose whichever essay you would like to read. Please refer to the curatorial notes below to see the list of essays.
Root Intelligence by Alecia Neo
This is a short prompt that Alecia has created to mark the beginning of a collaboration between the two of us. You can begin watching with whichever of the three you would like, and exit at any point you
will...You can skim through, catch only a few glimpses here and there, watch one more and the other less, re-play, skip the next one, press play at the middle....The cursor is yours so all up to you... If you would like to share photos of how you set up the exhibition in your space, we would very much love to see!
ABOUT THE WORKS:
bearing witness to the knotting skies
The film emerges from landing on questions such as, what is the relationship between a moving body and the rhythmic/vibratory structures, metaphors, and textures embedded in the act of weaving? How does one imagine a body immersing into the interiors of a woven fabric, a thread, and how does a woven fabric, a thread, penetrate through the body? In what ways do the interior and exterior corners, borders, and creases intersect each other? When does the inside become as clear as the outside, while the outside begins to morph and melt into a kind of inside? Can a dearth of space for connection, movement, and existence be lived like a dance? Is that how one expresses a sense of material endurance, a sense of visceral joy?
Do you remember the touch of a stitch?
This film is a collection of 17 visual essays in response to an open call titled “Contribute a stitch” that Meghna devised in May 2021. The motivation behind devising this call was obvious for the moment in time: to reach out, to find ways to relate. Seeking inspiration from Yoko Ono’s Mend Piece, the call hoped to gather as many hands as possible to relive/recreate a sense of touch, in the midst of the current crisis of congregation and community. In that, the intention was also to remember and honour the labour of weaving and mending that women across ages and societies have been investing into the household, turning objects of shelter into home. The participants were invited to film their interpretation of ‘weaving’ alongside create a textual response which could be a memory, a proposition, a thought, just a few words.
0.00 – Title and Preface by Meghna Bhardwaj
2.08 - “When an elephant shaped up” by Srabasti Ghosh
04.56 - “Four Frames” by Vittoria Conforti
7.08 – “Saathi” by Pallavi Verma
9.35- “Thread for me is forever tied to a poem by Walt Whitman” by Tanya Saxena
12.27 – “Boilersuit” by Becky Horne
14.34 – “City Lights” by Martin Bonney
16.15 – “Patine” by Marina Collard
18.27 – “Raija” by Hanna Jarvinen
21.07 – Untitled by Dinu Bodiciu
23.17 – “Sfilare II” by Susan Sentler
26.47 – “How can chaos be so beautiful?” by Sampurna Das
28.42 – Untitled by Aparajita Sarma
31.19 – “Darning” by Carolyn Roy
33.25- “for the body to turn inwards” by Mandeep Raikhy
35.10 – “dolls looked better with a hat” by Susan EE.
36.47 – “fish, flowers, butterflies, boat, elephants” by Bipasha Guptaroy
39.58 – “The Kantha Stitch” by Ipsita Mitra
Root Intelligence by Alecia Neo
This short film is a work-in-progress conceptualised and composed by Alecia expressing her interpretation of Meghna’s Yarning. The duo invites the viewer to see the film as a seed, a starting point, towards their future and more extensive collaborative inquiries pertaining to their interest in chasing connections running across words such as roots, plants, fibres, foliage, skins, and women.
Hushweave by Zeekos Perakos
Hushweave comprises two soundscapes, independently titled, Tactile Studies, and Spit and Split. The two tracks intend to represent the microscopic and the atmospheric, and have been composed by amplifying soft moments of everyday items, granular sound samples, and mouth percussion. Inspired by bodily motion, the two tracks are arranged to illustrate organic shifts over time. Sound samples used: hard drive, pieces of plastic, audio feedback, mouth sounds in between speech.
Susan Sentler, (she/her), is an artist rooted in the field of Dance/Performance working as educator/lecturer, maker/choreographer, researcher, director, curator, dramaturg and performer. She has practiced globally for over 30 years and began teaching in Higher Education in1992, meriting Senior Lecturer status. Susan’s practice is trans-disciplinary, anchored by a honed expanded somatic relationship to image. She has an ongoing collaborative research rooted in concept of ‘the fold’ with colleague Dr. Glenna Batson, The F/OL\D as Somatic/ Artistic Practice. In 2013, she received an MACP (Masters in Creative Practice, Dance Professional Practice) from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance in collaboration with Independent Dance, London/UK. Susan was on faculty 2015 to 2020 at LASALLE College of the Arts expanding the somatic and creative environment, generating numerous cross/inter-disciplinary projects within the institution as well as in the artistic terrain of Singapore and beyond. Susan focuses on gallery/museum contexts creating ‘responses’ or ‘activations’ within exhibitions as well as durational installations orchestrating moving/still image, objects, sound and absence/presence of the performing body. Her work has been exhibited, screened and/or performed in the UK, USA, Europe, Indonesia, Hong Kong and Singapore.
Alecia Neo develops long-term projects that involve collaborative partnerships with individuals and communities. Her socially engaged practice unfolds primarily through photography, video, and participatory workshops that address modes of radical hospitality, caregiving, and wellbeing. Her recent projects include ramah-tamah (2020), a dance film commissioned by the Asian Civilisations Museum, and Power to the People (2019), a site-specific art installation commissioned by Goethe Institut Singapur, featuring a performance by Chong Li-chuan and Deborah Emmanuel (ArunDitha). She is currently working on Care Index, an experimental platform that collects and features diverse practices of care performed by people from all walks of life. Care Index was initiated in Dec 2020 as part of the larger artistic research project on care practices, building on a previous collaborative project titled, Between Earth and Sky, which was developed
with a group of caregivers in Singapore. Care Index has been recently presented at The Listening Biennial, Assembly for Permacircular Museums (ZKM, Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe) and Asia-Art-Activism’s New Season of Care. She is the co-founder of Brack, a platform for socially engaged art and collaborative practices. http://alecianeo.com/ https://careindex.net/
Zeekos Perakos is a Singaporean solo electronic music project and internet pseudonym of Haziq Khalid. Computer music composition has always intrigued him as an avenue of musical expression and exploring different sonic possibilities. He takes inspiration from personal experience, the natural world and how things change over time. He has performed with Laek1yo, George Chua, Aqilah Misuary and Dharma. Zeekos is one-half of the electronic improvisation duo, Pupa.
Rishabh Chaudhary is a Delhi-based multidisciplinary designer and artist working at the intersection of still image, motion, sound and architecture; drawing inspiration from the natural- organic and human-structured worlds.
Meghna is a dancer and researcher currently based in Delhi, India. She has participated in numerous residencies, including ARTEFACT#2 Creative Residency, Dance Nucleus, Singapore (2021); FACETS, Attakalari, Bangalore, India (2017); Gati Summer Dance Residency, Delhi (2015), Dance Journey Program, Kibbutz Contemporary Dance Company, Hazafon, Israel (2014),
Marameo, Berlin (2013), and Taipedia Dance Festival (World Dance Alliance), Taipei, Taiwan (2011). Meghna has danced for Ahn Ae-soon, ex-director of Korean National Contemporary Dance Company, and Indian choreographer and activist Mandeep Raikhy. She received her doctorate in Theatre and Performance Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University and is currently teaching at the Department of Art and Performing Arts, Shiv Nadar University. She plans to expand her current artistic research, Yarning, at her upcoming residency (April-June 2022) at Esplanade, Singapore.