Art What! Arts Singapore

Museum Musings: From Lost Roots to Urban Meadows at The Private Museum

Screenshot 2019-02-28 at 12.09.24 AM

This March, in celebration of International Woman’s Day 2019, The Private Museum presents a join exhibition by female artists Madhvi Subrahmanian and Nandita Mukand, featuring installation and sculptural works informed by their explorations into how nature inserts itself into the urban world.

In From Lost Roots to Urban Meadows, the joint exhibition sees concepts of fluidity, nature, metaphysics and more. For Subrahmanian, the ceramics artist reflected on the interconnectedness between nature and urban culture, offering up participatory experiences that bring together both the conceptual and sensory. In this case, she attempts to probe how nature manages to imprint itself into our everyday life as they explores the structure of cities, perhaps thinking of phenomena such as biomimicry.

Says Subrahmanian: “I have been exploring the relationship of nature with urban culture in my recent works, building immersive installations that bring conceptual and sensory experiences together. My practice is contemplative and repetitive in nature and for this show I have been consumed with exploring the grid and the shadows it creates. Works such as the Window and Floor Plan series are abstract distillations and amalgamations of city structures, space layouts and archaeological sites. I see the window as a key architectural component that facilitates sight and perspective. Juxtaposed against the Windows is the “forest of shadows”, created by form, material and the play of light and shadow. The shape-shifting shadows and the displacement of object by its shadow and vice versa, speaks of the temporality and transience, of life and nature.”

Meanwhile, drawing upon her interests in metaphysics and its abstract concepts such as being, knowing, identity, time, and space; and neuroplasticity (the brain’s ability to reorganise itself by forming new neural connections throughout life), Mukand’s works observe the deep intricacies of nature mingled and merged with the workings of the urban mind. Says Mukand: “How often do we set aside our devices to be alone inside Nature, to let ourselves be surrounded by it? When outside city walls, we often view Nature through screens: through car windows, camera lenses, phone screens. For me these screens and our urban mindsets are The Urban Veil. It separates us from Nature. We no longer see ourselves as a part of the natural world.”

Through the inquisitive lens of the artists, From Lost Roots to Urban Meadows seeks to challenge our perceptions of nature and life – inviting the viewer to delve deeper into our urban existence with and without nature.

From Lost Roots to Urban Meadows runs at The Private Museum from 22nd March to 5th May 2019. Admission is free. For more information, visit the website here

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