KOCHI: Tresa Antony, a nurse and entrepreneur based in Kochi, believes that art is a personal act of courage, something that begins with one person and changes those around him. In a world that runs on mass-produced items, she believes in the value of human touch in the objects we surround ourselves with. Her first solo exhibition named ‘Enamoured enclosure’ started on December 22 and features about 50 of her newest handicrafts. The show will conclude on Saturday.
Tresa calls her creations ‘enamoured enclosures’ for a reason. “When I pick up an object and feel its surface, I feel one with it,” she says. She then sees through it—what it is and what it could be. Hailing from Idukki, Tresa’s father was a farmer and she shares an unbreakable bond with nature. “Nature does not throw away anything. It builds over them and transforms them into a new thing. Everything is interconnected,” she says. While she has been painting and crafting since she was a child, it was about 11 months ago that she started making sculptures from recycled objects.
And so, Tresa chose to retain and reinvent things around her. “We can create more from the things we dismiss as trivial. Everything, even a fallen leaf or a broken bottle, has a shape and story that can fire up the imagination. Everything has a purpose in this universe. Enthusiasm and patience make all the difference,” she says. She works with cement, discarded clothes, newspaper, bottles, tins, old helmets, leaves, small wooden sticks, thread, rope, coconut shell, eggshells and beads. She is especially fond of leaves, for each leaf is made in a unique pattern.
Her work also shadows the features of a woman. One of her works named ‘bereft mother’, is made of a bottle, cement, plant material, stones and fabric and speaks about the strength of the mother figure. Tresa wants to venture into painting next. She also makes home decor items that can help people have easy-to-manage indoor gardens despite a busy schedule, like ‘kokedama’, a ball of soil, covered with moss, on which an ornamental plant grows.