KOCHI: In what is perhaps a first-of-its-kind art exhibition that brings together contemporary art from Kerala, five venues in Alappuzha and one venue in Kochi are all set to host a large scale art event christened ‘Lokame Tharavadu’ (The World is One Family) in a fortnight’s time in line with the Kochi-Muziris Biennale. The exhibition which will kickoff on March 10 will feature works of more than 260 Malayali artists based in India and abroad. Helmed by the Kochi Biennale Foundation and curated by artist Bose Krishnamachari, the project which was initiated by the government of Kerala, attempts to foster cultural activities and provide a fillip to artists from the state who have suffered greatly since the pandemic outbreak.
“Most artists, including me, have been confined to their homes for the last many months. This inspired many of us to profoundly think about our home, surroundings and the world. These poignant thoughts let to the conception of the exhibition.
As part of my curatorial process, I was looking for artists who either lived in Kerala at some point or have engaged with the land through their work. For many of them this will be their first major show and indeed an important opportunity.
Alappuzha was chosen as the site because this is a planned city with a lot of potential to be a world-class destination just like Kochi. It was the original port centre whose importance got diminished after Cochin Port was developed. Furthermore, art should be spread out, available everywhere and be accessible to everyone,” said Bose.
Organised in collaboration with culture and tourism departments, Lalitha Kala Akademi, Muziris Heritage Project and Alappuzha Heritage Project, Kerala State Coir Corporation Ltd among others, the five venues located in Alappuzha are all of historical significance. Erstwhile coir godowns, colossal and magnificent in their structure, will be transformed as galleries to house artworks while open spaces will host cultural programmes, conferences and talks.
Each venue will also have a stall by Kudumbashree to aid community engagement and mobilisation. “Kudumbashree will help us connect with the public. They are one of the stakeholders. Similarly, Indian Institute of Architects and Institute of Indian Interior Designers are pitching in with interesting projects. The site is one of the most significant elements,” added Bose.