Brass sculptures on view spotlight growing industrialisation, loss of humanity
New Delhi: As the industrial juggernaut continues to spread its wings in the modern society, an artist’s befitting sculptural response to it, is a visual metaphor for surfaces — and hearts — hardening when touched by industrial forces.
Kolkata-based artist Pintu Sikdar’s metal sculptures opened for public viewing in a solo show “Hybridity” at the Triveni Kala Sangam here on Monday.
Using textured sheets of brass nuts to show surfaces impacted by modernisation, Sikdar has explored the tussle between cultivation and industrialisation on limited land resources.
“If they go together, then it’s fine but often the latter wins. Deforestation and urbanisation on fertile land is alarmingly reducing cultivable area. Indiscriminate use of chemicals hampers the land’s fertility. Days are not far off when land will refuse to produce. We shall have then to depend absolutely on industry for food to eat,” 35-year-old Sikdar told IANS.
“Humans are getting hard as things around get rigid, we are losing our humanness,” he explained a process that seemed like the opposite of King Midas’ gold touch.
What he sculpts are ‘organic’ things (or objects thought to be traditionally flexible in texture), like peapods, deers, leopards, scorpions, clothes, and bamboo hand-fans.
The catch? Certain parts of these depictions are made of nut-textured brass, implying, in Sikdar’s visual language, an encounter with industrialisation.
Consider, for instance, a brass pea-pod shaped like a ziploc container, where the inside contents are untouched, but the pod’s exterior is brass nut. Another example could be a half-eaten fish sculpture, whose bones are spiralled into trees but part of it still remains brass nut.
How does he create the sculptures?
“First, I make the form in clay. Then I make a moulding of Plaster of Paris over it. Then I detach the mould and arrange the nuts at the inside wall of the mould and join them by means of gas welding. Then, the (final) structure comes into shape,” he said about the process.
The exhibition proves to be a good reflecting space in humankind’s relentless pursuit of progress and development, which often comes at costs of resources, human beings and even, humanity.
It is open for public viewing till January 2.