Copyright © 2011 Bharat Sikka.
All rights reserved.
All rights reserved.
NATURE MORTE BERLIN
Bharat Sikka: "MATTER"
February 24 - March 19, 2011
Opening: February 24th, 6-9pm
Nature Morte is pleased to announce "Matter," a series of new works by photographer Bharat Sikka.
"Matter" features a series of images in a variety of formats that blend studio, street, landscape and portrait photography into a portrait of the "new" India, an ancient culture slamming up against contemporary realities. The site of rapid change brought on by globalization and breakneck development, India is searching for its identity – trying on new ones, uneasily inhabiting traditional ones, and shedding old ones like masks. Sikka's images explore this mercurial identity from his own very personal perspective: urban, educated, middle-class and self-conscious. The palette of "Matter" is doggedly reductive; eschewing India's clichéd bright hues, Sikka works only in blacks, greys, whites and silvers.
Sikka does not shy away from exposing every side of India's uneven visual topography. All beautifully composed, the photographs show moments of brooding and alienation, moments of sheer energy, moments of teenage irreverence and moments of macabre allure. Mixing high and low, Sikka also pits the natural against the artificial: the peaks of the Himalayas are echoed in the folds and creases of a plastic sheet, while the unsettling gleam of a plastic-masked figure contrasts with the sensuous portraits of young men and women. A website www.mattershow.com will document and update the corpus of images for the next year.
Sikka has revealed the ambiguities visible in his transforming home country before. The series' "Indian Men" and "Space In-Between" portrayed the faces of the men and the liminal landscapes of India with a similar aesthetic of uncertainty.
Sikka himself has this to say about this new body of work: " 'Matter' is a visual record of the many things that come my way. From photographing the ordinary, to the dead and the alive, these images constitute things that evoke an impulsive emotion in me. They do not only merely determine the state of my mind, but also challenge the way I perceive my surroundings. Each of these images has their own story or perhaps none at all. From an impetuous decision of jotting a word down, to rather lifting my camera and making that picture, I am writing and making notes while also making images."
Bharat Sikka, born in 1973, completed a BFA at Parson's School of Design in New York In 2002. He has exhibited his works in New Delhi, Mumbai, Paris, Milan and New York. Sikka travels widely from his home in New Delhi, working as a photographer for publications and projects such as The New York Times, Wallpaper, , Vanity Fair, GQ, Vogue India, Vogue Hommes International, I-D Magazine, Time Magazine, The New Yorker to name a few.