A recurrent theme of our contemporary times has been one of divisiveness. Divisiveness within our family structures, society and the world at large.
Divisiveness brought forth sometimes by the realigned realities of our work and life patterns and sometimes by the rhetoric and aggression of political institutions. The constant representation and reassertion of this theme has become an inescapable reality in our media intensive 24/7 lives and the belief that we are each a majority of one is perhaps rapidly setting in a quiet, complacent acceptance of the way things are.
Yet, in this seemingly fragmented, growingly disjointed world of our lives and those of others, someone somewhere settles down with a warm cup of tea and ponders, like Ethan Hawke in the 1995 movie classic 'Before Sunset' –"If we all have our own individual unique soul, where do they all come from? You know, are modern souls only a fraction of the original souls? At best, we’re like these tiny fractions of people...Is that why we're so scattered?...Is that why we're so specialized?"
When we first came across works by artists Sanjay Sundram and Pratibha Singh, it seemed obvious from the beginning that they were both, in their own ways, revisiting these questions.Perhaps re-examining the rhetoric and revisiting the insoluble connections between us and them and everything that surrounds us. In their work lie the clues to a counter perspective or age old wisdom. A world of connected realities and inseparable lives where humans and nature and all things celestial seem forever intertwined in the magical realm of birth, death and redistribution of souls.
'Killing cockroaches in heroic poses' is not what Michelangelo might have imagined the possible descendants of Adam and Eve engaged in, 500 years after he first set out to paint them on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. Yet, if we are to believe Sanjay, this is precisely what goes on when they are not busy 'Sharing a Goat with Household Members'. Sanjay, with his dual talent for expression through word and image, puts it more eloquently –“Fulfilling his divinely appointed role To rule and to multiply,5,976,000,000 Endlessly.