17.11.2023 to 15.01.2024 - SCHAURAUM Angewandte
MQ Artist-in-Residence Hans Ramduth: Submergence & Emergence
FREE ENTRY, ART, FILM & DIGITAL CULTURE
Opening Thu 16.11, 19h
Island aesthetics may seem strange for an Austrian art-loving public: there is no angst, it seems childish and out of fashion. Maybe this is because time happens differently there: both faster and slower. lt is always about relations, a putting into-relationship, "une poetique de la relation" as Glissant would say. Transposing this idea to the Indian Ocean from Glissant's Atlantic yields unusual results: here, around the last colonized islands of the world, are the oldest cultures of the world: the Khoisan on one side in Southern Africa, the Australian first people on the other, Sentinelese islanders in the Andaman in the North, just off the Indian subcontinent. Some of these cultures as old as the Venus of Willendorf.
How to reconcile the extreme speed at which the islands are changing, how to put in relation with the extreme past? The digital and the analogue, the tactile and textured materiality with the disembodied vinyl pop art?
At the core are two myths intertwined: that of a speaking tree that gives fruits that are alive and which speak to humans, and that of a lost continent where giants sculpted the mountains: Lemuria.
Here the two myths enable the re-imagination of the fruits of the speaking tree as big-nosed rock-like creatures. The tree (the Vacoas or Pandanus) itself has many uses, and its fibre was used for paper making, producing here maps of an ocean which is fast changing: soon some islands will disappear (the Maldives), while others like Mauritius may lose their coastlines and their beautiful hotels ...
A snapshot then, of changing times down there, in the Global South, in that link between Asia and Africa.
About the Artist
Hans Ramduth, born 1970, Mauritius, grew up and studied Art History in Shantiniketan, an alter-modernist art university, near Kolkata in lndia. A multi-disciplinary creative and academic, he has worked variously as cartoonist, puppeteer, documentary film maker and voice actor both for local and international audiences. He has authored one book in 2007 on the post-independence visual arts of Mauritius, and then embarked on a PhD, on the dynamics of identity construction in the field of visual culture of Mauritius (completed in 2015).
He has been a curator, member of selection panels and as a member of the UNESCO African team for the 2005 Convention, advised Mauritian government on the creative policies of the island. His visual work ranges from video and animation, to installation and paper-making and drawing. He is interested in Global South cultural responses to the multi-dimensional crisis of the Anthropocene.
Hans Ramduth is currently teaching at the art department of Mahatma Gandhi Institute and in November he is Artist-in-Residence at MuseumsQuartier Wien.
Curated by Luzius Bernhard (dieAngewandte)
Photo: © Hans Ramduth