Reena Saini Kallat: Untitled (Map/Drawing)
Interpretations of contemporary globalization processes can vary widely. The artistic piece of Reena Saini Kallat from India represents one of its most contentious issues - the migration and large scale movement of people around the world. The movement which is in this case represented by the flow of electricity in the wires conecting different parts of the map allows for disconnection of time from space in our lives and contact with other cultures. But at the same time, these movements are part of the wider processes of globalization that create new divisions between those migrants who are able to "fly" and those who are just involuntarily leaked out of somewhere by its force.
Untitled (Map/Drawing) (2011)
The flows and movements of labour migrants across the world have resulted in cultural exchanges not to mention the social and economic implications. It has not only allowed us to free cultural identities from a physical place but see us all as entwined in a symbolic web as it were. When I was asked to conceive of a wall work for the Konsthall during the Goteborg International Biennale of Contemporary Art 2011, keeping the curatorial premise in mind, I decided to work with electric wires to form the drawing that will trace patterns of movement of migrants globally, where multitude of actors interact without knowledge of the overall situation. I think of this work as a drawing project, made with wires that essentially transmit energy and information from one place to another. It is said that the electricity is the same in electrical equipment but the expression of electricity differs from one appliance to the next. By changing the instrument of this quasi-cartographic drawing from a pencil line to a wire, I’m interested in the notion of the map as dynamic, ever changing, streaming and transferring data with the global flows of energies and people, as the courses of these travelers intersect.
Reena Saini Kallat
Born in 1973, Delhi, India.
Lives and works in Delhi, India.
Reena Saini Kallat graduated from Sir J. J. School of Art, Mumbai in 1996 with a B.F.A. in painting. Her practice – spanning painting, photography, video, sculpture and installation, often incorporates multiple mediums into a single work. She frequently works with officially recorded or registered names of people, objects, and monuments that are lost or have disappeared without a trace, only to get listed as anonymous and forgotten statistics. One of the recurrent motifs in her work is the rubber stamp, used as an object and an imprint, signifying the bureaucratic apparatus, which both confirms and obscures identities. Her work has been widely exhibited across the world and she has participated in a number of workshops and residencies. She lives and works in Mumbai.