KOCHI: According to French artist Edgar Degas, art isn’t what the maker sees, but what he makes the viewer see. Let it be a painting, a movie or theatre, the power of art helps us cross over to a different place and time. Actor and director Geethu Mohandas with her latest release ‘Moothon’ has tried to help her audience with this multi-dimensional creative experience.
The release of the movie is being paired with an art exhibition, where 10 artists from the state have created their interpretations of emotions, components and memories from the movie. K L Leon, Latheesh Lakshman, Prasad Raghavan, Reji K P, Riyas Komu, Siji Krishnan, Sosa Joseph, Sumedh Rajendran, T V Santhosh and Vivek Vilasini are the artists behind the frames. Curated by artist and sculptor Riyas Komu, the exhibition is a testimony to the bond shared by cinema and art.
“I would call it a marriage between the two; a set of parallel journeys made by multiple creators along the storyline,” he says. The crime thriller starring Nivin Pauly and produced by Anurag Kashyap, Alan McAlex, Ajay Rai and Vinod Kumar is a bilingual narrative in Malayalam and Hindi. The exhibition embodies each stage of Moothon’s creation in the last two years, according to Geethu. The artists were handed over the script first and then given a first look at major clips from the movie.
“My initial plan changed completely after seeing the movie’s visual representation,” says T V Santhosh, whose frame named ‘His Divine Interpretations’ revolves around Nivin Pauly’s early life in the flick as a witch doctor. He endures pain and cures those around him as if welcoming a divine intervention working through him.
“But the components of violence and colours is part of my design language and my socio-political outlook. This experiment is an identification of the movie through my imagination,” adds the Trissur-based artist who studied sculpture at Shantiniketan.A striking detail of the exhibition is the way it has brought together creative artists who work with different mediums and subjects. For Kannur-based collaborator, Latheesh Laxman, his work ‘Pennaano” printed on handmade paper bridges his imagination and design background.
“We had absolute freedom to work the concept as we pleased, and I was touched by the gender identity crisis that this film addresses,” he adds. Two works by Baroda-based artist K P Reji in shades of blue are the storytellers of the lot. The first one speaks the story of a child who crosses the sea locked in a container, while the second ‘Sea Blue’ plays around a page from the story. Depicting two men nearing an embrace, holding their hands out and united in touch, it was inspired by the relationship Nivin Pauly’s character shares with a transperson, played by Sujith Shankar.
“It is one of the most surreal representations of intimacy I have come across in a movie and it stayed with me,” he adds. “This is just a beginning. Riyas and I have more plans to execute such projects in the future,” says Geethu, adding that cinema has always borrowed from art and this exhibition is an effort at reinforcing that. “Interesting concepts have taken life when great, creative minds interact and this is a trend throughout history,” comments Santhosh, citing the example of conversations between Rabindranath Tagore and Albert Einstein. “This is the beginning of something similarly stimulating,” he concludes.
Language of art
The exhibition curated by artist Riyas Komu and actor-director Geethu Mohandas was inaugurated by actor Nivin Pauly at Papaya Art Cafe at Panampilly Nagar. The show is on till December 8 and features paintings by 10 artists from the state, including Siji Krishnan, Vivek Vilasini, T V Santhosh, Reji K P and K L Leon