Memories Unlocked | Partition, Migration, Identity

Memories Unlocked | Partition, Migration, Identity

15th August 2020 - 17th August 2020

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Art has always been a mirror to society and reflective of personal and collective experiences. But some events were deliberately erased from public memory. The Partition was one of them. Few wanted to face the horror of what had happened to those who overnight lost their homes, their loved ones and sometimes their lives. For years, many artists like S L Parasher locked their work away, while others like Satish Gujral found that confronting a blood soaked and painful past was impossible for many. Artists like Krishen Khanna, Satish Gujral, S.L. Parasher, Jogen Chowdhury, and Arpana Caur did depict the suffering, while music, cinema, poetry also captured the brutality— but by and large, for decades, there was a veil of silence over the Partition. Yet, the experience of setting up the Partition Museum has taught us that art continuously offers space for reflection, compassion, understanding and refuge. The exhibition, Memories Unlocked: Partition, Migration, Identity showcases the work of established and promising artists from India revolving around the themes of loss, identity and migration, both contemporary and historical. What are the memories that Partition survivors brought with them, what is it that our families collectively remember? How is identity shaped through migration? The Partition Museum with support of Art Alive Gallery brings to you a selection of 25 works by 15 eminent as well as upcoming artists: Krishen Khanna, Anjolie Ela Menon, Jogen Chowdhury, Jatin Das, Paresh Maity, Arpana Caur, Jayasri Burman, Atul Bhalla, Viren Tanwar, Manisha Gera Baswani, Seema Kohli, Ayesha Singh, Purvai Rai, Ekta Singha and Divya Singh. The exhibition attempts to understand art as a reflection as well as response to the socio-cultural environment that surrounds us. Being a People’s Museum, the Partition Museum has relied on the support of the people since its formation.In the same spirit, by showcasing their works in this exhibition, artists have come together to generously support the museum and its cause. Through their creativity, many stories of the Partition live on, as we examine a syncretic culture (St Francis, 1982, by Krishen Khanna) or experience a railway station packed with refugees (Refugees in Sealdah Railway Station,1958, by Jogen Chowdhury), or turn the leaves of an old book (Lost Histories, 2020, by Arpana Caur), or find compassion in a much loved deity (Krishna, 2020, Jayasri Burman). In each artwork is a memory unlocked.
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