Monday, August 29, 2011

Will you please plant a tree

'Neo Monster' is an installation project by Vibha Galhotra involving a
larger than life size Earth Mover Machine made out of an inflated
balloon. This work is a continuation of a half a decade long
engagement with the 'city'. Her reaction to the fast changing gigantic
urbanity all around us, has been that of awe and works explored this
awe, fascination, fear and anxieties. Her works speak of the growth,
evolution and transformation of a city into a globalised identity. She
usually uses nontraditional materials to create large-scale, highly
tactile pieces.

Vibha Galhotra loves to engage with these zones of play, wit,
nostalgia and materiality. One of the few artists of our times capable
of re- defining what a sculpture is, for years now Vibha has been
feeling restricted by gallery spaces. In the last few years she has
been exploring possibilities of presenting her work in interactive
public spaces. Her desire to explore materiality and experiment with
large scale sculpture, combines with her believe that any engagement
with City, Histories and Desire can only take more meaning in dialogue
with a larger public. With Neo Monster, Vibha proposes a new fantasy
toy which plays with, what the notions of desire and development mean
in our age.

Awe, fascination, fear, anxieties and joy get evoked by this giant
like inflatable Earth Moving Machine toy. These machines have grown to
symbolize, large scale construction and rising consumerism. Even as
Vibha is firmly entrenched in the grand metropolis, trees and open
skies have been entrenched in her since early days at Chandigarh and
Shantiniketan. All the magnificence and strength of these handsome
Earth movers cannot erase the memories of all the trees uprooted and
all the forests and play grounds destroyed by these very machines. It
is this conjecture between nostalgia and development that Neo Monsters
is born out of.
Play, Fun and Innocence become central characters, in the story of
nostalgia Vibha weaves.

Can we build our shiny cities, yet let Nature be
Our new toys can destroy all that we see
Every time you read this poem
Will you please plant a tree


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