In Beauty

In Beauty

the garment series by vivan sundaram

Vivan Sundaram

The Garment Series

Friday, September 9, 2011Saturday, September 24, 2011


Chicago, IL USA

Walsh Gallery Closing Show: In Beauty
Sept. 9-24, 2011
One night only visual performance at opening reception : Sept.9 (5-8pm)

After 17 years, Walsh Gallery will be leaving its current location to start a new chapter: going nomadic. The gallery will be holding exhibitions and staging art happenings around the world. Walsh Gallery's concluding show in Chicago will be a mélange of mediums: wearable art, pseudo-fashion photos, new media visual performances and sculptures of gilded women's heads. In Beauty is a collaboration between artists Vivan Sundaram, Ravinder Reddy and Jongbum Choi that playfully looks at the basis of our perception of beauty. The exhibit runs only 2 weeks, from September 9 - September 24. The opening reception is Friday, September 9th from 5:30 - 8:00pm.

Delhi-based artist Vivan Sundaram will feature a curated selection of his work from his wearable art: The Garment Series. Models will circulate in the gallery, pose as sculptures, and freeze as phony photographers shoot their pictures. The "garments" are made of indigenous materials sourced locally from garbage dumps, market purchases as well as used goods from friends and acquaintances. Everything, for the most part, is cast-off and recycled to become specific garments. Each of these "garments" is made of a single type of object in multiplicity. Sundaram creates fashion using materials such as surgical masks, kitchen sponges, ties, purses, hospital urinary incontinence sheets, or belts to name a few.

In conjunction with Sundaram's presentation, Seoul-based artist Jongbum Choi will initiate a dialogue with the models in garments with his site-specific visual performances. He will integrate video compiled from his database of images with his music performance, surrounding the models in the gallery with light and sound. During this one-night-only performance, the entire main gallery room will be covered by his video projections.

Visakhapatnam-based artist Ravinder Reddy will exhibit new sculptures of women's heads. His sculptures explore ideas of timeless beauty that is not so much about physical beauty, rather with women's ability throughout time to survive hardship using their strength of character. Mr. Reddy is mainly inspired by Egyptian and African ideas behind the form of beauty. Each of the sculptural heads is inspired from the various women he sees in his town. Mr. Reddy's heads are usually enormous and are often thought to be contemporary deities. It is undoubtedly striking that even though only two small heads (17x13x8 inches each) will be on display in the exhibition, they radiate a much larger presence similar to their grandiose counterparts.

Vivan Sundaram's work has appeared in numerous biennial exhibitions including Shanghai, Johannesburg, Kwangju and Havana; as well as institutions such as the Asia Society (New York), Japan Foundation, Fukuoka Asian Art Museum (Japan), National Gallery of Modern Art (New Delhi), the Tate Modern (London), and the House of World Cultures (Berlin). Jongbum Choi's installations have been included in prominent art fairs and festivals including Daegu International New Media Arts Festival (Korea) DIVA-Digital & Video Art Fair (Köln, Miami, New York and Paris), Gwangju International Film Festival (Korea), Hong Kong Fringe Festival Dance Theater Ccadoo (Hong Kong), Köln Art Fair (Germany) and Singapore Arts Festival (Singapore). Ravinder Reddy's work has made appearances in a selection of shows held in institutions such as Andy Warhol Museum (Pittsburgh), the Asia Society (New York, traveling to Australia, Canada and Taiwan), Centre du Pompidou (Paris), Centre for Contemporary Art (New Delhi), Centro Casa Asia (Madrid), Deutsch Bank Gallery (New York), Institute deCultura (Barcelona), and the Japan Foundation (Tokyo).