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ME WE Exhibition: Locating the Individual Within the Movement, shouts ‘LGBTQ’ rights in the form of art; digital and conventional.
The visual arts ME WE Exhibition organized at The American Center breaks through dominant ideas that limit and marginalize queer art by creating a new concept of queer as a wider platform for excellence in arts.
ME WE exhibition was supported by 34 embassies based in Delhi and was organized in association with the project Engendered from 26th June to 8th July. It celebrated the resilient and tenacious individualism of over 25 artist voices, self-identified as Queer.
In a room full of art that spanned paintings, photographs, sculptures, videos, sci-fi fantasia, comic-book graphic art and digital media appropriations, one could follow an emotional landscape echoing with the loudness of suppressed voices.
The exhibition experienced a myriad of established voices in the movement of LGBTQ Rights such as photographers Ram Rahman and Sonia Khurana and artists including Balbir Krishan, Valay Gada, Inder Salim and Satadru Sovan.
We are all women’s issues by Inder Salim
There were voices of artists of north-east such as Baishali Chetia and Jenny T.S. Emerging young artists such as Aditya Raj and Mohan Jangid, Gopa Trivedi, Manmeet Devgun, Renu Sharma and Gargi Chandola were found there representing various aspects of society ranging from feminism to queer art from the eyes of those defying status quo.
Indira Lakshmi Prasad
Indira Lakshmi Prasad, an emerging artist expressed on the inspiration behind her art.
“A woman is always expected to conceal herself: her body, her thoughts, her expressions.”
She explained her painting drawn from her own menstrual blood, looming within the cuttings of sentences that inspired her to make this strong depiction of stigma around menstruation.
Artwork by Indira Lakshmi Prasad
She came out through her art touching topics like menstrual blood being equal to blood coming out of any body part, bold red textile representations of periods, vagina and sex as well as paintings showcasing in the form of overlapping loud colors of masculine sensitivity and feminine strength.
Installation by Indira Lakshmi Prasad
Ipshita Thakur another new coming of age artist, took us through her creative journey expressed quite prominently in her art pieces that consisted of ball-point pen sketchings as well as digital art.
Self-identified as a lesbian, her art is a collaboration of different expressions portraying intimacy and individualism. She says about becoming more mature with her art “Growth is everyone’s own tangent.”
Artwork by Ipshita Thakur
Artist such as Amir Rabbani and Adil Kalimand were some Muslim voices that showcased their emotions of the quarrel between religion and sexuality.
Amir Rabbani was a proud homosexual and a Bihari. Environment and sexual acceptance go hand in hand and when each and every aspect of your environment compels you to hide: you hide.
A silent person with a lot to express, his paintings depict two people mangled with each other, people bereft of identities. His artwork on love with hidden identities echoes his own realities on being compelled to love within shades yet the quintessential need to love nevertheless.
Artwork by Aamir Rabbani
Myna Mukherjee, the curator who put together ME WE art exhibition and the Director of The Engendered Project, beamed with pride as the exhibition turned out to be quite a success among the locals of Delhi. The artworks present there had a certain appeal such that they found a way to speak stories and inspire different people of society to come out of their self-censorship and embrace self-acceptance.
The ME WE Exhibition also for the first time in Delhi launched a community library for LGBTQ young adults named “Resonance through Reading” exploring important themes and issues ranging from LGBT representation in children’s literature to narratives by bi, gay, lesbian and trans people about their lives, desires, and identities.
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