Painted Almanac Highlights Our Obsession with Mapping and Measuring Time

The exhibition has been curated by Tunty Chauhan and is being presented by Threshold Art Gallery. The exhibition will be on display till December 22, 2019 at the gallery in New Delhi, India.

Manjunath Kamath, Somethings I Lost, Few Things I Forgot, 2019

“Time is a movement invented by thought ... it is a creation of Human Consciousness. So, by definition, in a state of ‘Thoughtlessness’, Time ceases to exist and past, present and future coexist simultaneously.”

Desmond Lazaro, The Dymaxion Map IV, 2019

Our obsession with mapping and measuring time has led to seminal research on cosmology, astrology and art. For Painted Almanac, the artists have been invited to explore personal, historical, geological and cosmic time, investigate past traditions and beliefs, as well as old and new visual representations of the calendar as a measure of the passage of time. Along with the passage of time, the artists examine the influence of the folk, the local and multiplicity of faiths on the aestheticization of the image in contemporary arts. Their renderings are culled from their own personal archive of memories, milestones, or even their interpretations of the traditional almanacs like the Buddhist and Jain calendars and the Baramasa, that marks the twelve months that make up a year, divided into seasons and festivals.

Gulam Mohammed Sheikh, Between Famine and Floods, 2019

The mapping of time in Gulam Mohammed Sheikh’s painting from Famine to Floods is inspired by the Baramasa and depicts the changing seasons. Anindita Bhattacharya’s gossamer work Thick as Guilt, points to a very grim reality of the progression of one species and extinction of others during her lifetime. In his work, Mapping the Heavens and The Dymaxion Map, Desmond iconises the divine significance of celestial events with the use of gold. Manisha Gera’s delicate mark-making alludes to the pregnant pauses that punctuate our daily lives. Roshan Chabbria revisits the subliminal messaging of retro Indian calendars, where clever advertisers juxtaposed products with images of Gods and Goddesses. In his work, The Cycle of Years, V Ramesh references Jain images of the cosmos to map the eternal wheel of time. Manjunath Kamat’s reinterpretation of a distressed Buddhist Tankha of ‘kaal’ (time) where cultures, iconographies and art have been ravaged by the passage of time. Tarshito’s fine miniatures in collaboration with local artists bring timeless wisdom of spiritual values like love, unity and a connection with the Divine. Ruby’s stoneware pebbles bear witness to and are marked by the imprints of our life experiences.

V. Ramesh, The Cycle of Years, 2019

Thus, though they are acting in the present, the artists establish their consciousness in a sacred area free from the influence of Time, and reinforce the idea of using states of thoughtlessness to transcend time.

Anindita Bhattacharya, Thick as Guilt, 2019