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Kochi, March 14 – Artworks of two female artists is the centre of attraction at the fifth edition of the ongoing Kochi Biennale.
A distinctive video installation by noted Finland artist Martta Tuomaala is a harsh critique of existing socio-political scenarios with wide-ranging themes like misuse of power, administrative bias, unemployment, insecurity among workers, gender bias, moral policing, capitalism, rising inequality, and protest.
A black comedy, the video ‘FinnCycling-Soumi-Perkele!’ has been written, directed, and anchored by Martta. Though it mainly manifests the darker regions of Finland, viewers could make out a much broader perspective and connect with similar situations elsewhere.
Martta explains the theme of the video through the expert use of indoor cycling. Martta appears in the video, continuously pedalling her cycle. Despite sweating profusely, she couldn’t gain an inch. This image is used to raise harsh criticisms and hurl arrows of black comedy reflecting the intolerable conditions prevailing in the socio-political field.
The second one is about a young Malayali artist Mithra Kamalam reflects and recreates the hard struggles endured by women who are forced to stand within the boundaries imposed upon them in the real world, through her awe-inspiring creation at the Biennale.
The artwork, belonging to the series ‘Corrective Measures’ and put together using paintings and sculptural installations, stand apart with its uniqueness in layout as well. The unique inferences drawn by Mithra Kamalam that gets passed on to the viewer are thought-provoking.
The display at the Biennale by Mithra Kamalam is based on the painting on the subject of ‘Sati’ by Dutch illustrator Jan Huygen van Linschoten from the 16th century.
“To bring out the ideas churned inside, definitive themes, relevant quotes, and documents from history are sometimes assimilated. The influence of tradition, explanatory language, and miniature painting is my style. Many creations contain elements from my own life. Historical quotes and documents that match the narrative have been embodied,” explained Mitra Kamalam.