Art Dubai Commission 2023 x Ishara Art Foundation


Date: March 4, 2023
Time: 7 PM
Venue: Art Dubai, Madinat Jumeirah

After Reaching Boiling Point
By Amol K. Patil and Parul Sinha in collaboration with Yalgaar Sanskrutik Manch

Ishara Art Foundation is pleased to collaborate with Art Dubai on the Artist Commission for 2023. The Artist Commission is a non-profit initiative developed in partnership with a range of local and international cultural partners. Themed around food, community, celebration and hope, the initiative this year comprises of daily performances and food-based experiences through new site-specific works of artists selected by South Asia’s leading institutions and the participating galleries of Art Dubai.

After Reaching Boiling Point revolves around Péz, a water and rice preparation that has been a source of nourishment for farmers working on the fields in Maharashtra and the Konkan region of India. The project comprises of freshly cooked Péz served as shots, a ‘Recipe Book of Resistance’ and a performance installation by Yalgaar.

The recipe for Péz emerged from conditions where resources were limited. It is a preparation that was also served in prisons in form of gruel since the colonial period in British India. While variations of it are found far and wide, it is recognised today as comfort food with medicinal properties among the privileged, while the history of caste and class oppression associated with it have been erased. ‘After Reaching Boiling Point’ casts this preparation together with stories, poems and songs of resistance emerging from social, anti-caste struggles in 20th and 21st century India.

The project germinates from the values and ideas of Lumbung practices in Documenta 15, of which Patil, Sinha and Yalgaar were participants. This commission is an invitation of the Ishara Art Foundation in collaboration with Art Dubai.

After Reaching Boiling Point was performed at Art Dubai 2023 on Saturday, 4th March at 7 PM.

About the Artists
Amol Patil (b. 1987) is a conceptual and performance artist based in Mumbai. After his education in the visual arts from Rachana Sansad Academy of Fine Arts and Crafts, Mumbai, his work has explored the intersection of performance art, theatre, music, kinetic art and video installation. He has initiated and has been part of several collective practices and has participated in exhibitions around the world since 2013.

Patil’s work excavates and investigates family traditions. His grandfather was an interpreter and a poet (Powada Shahir, a troubadour telling epic stories as he went from one village to another); and his father was an avant-garde playwright who addressed issues such as the devastating effects of immigration and its traumas through absurd situations in his plays. Patil, and before him, his family, has considered art as a method of resistance. In his recent work, he has been researching the processes of urbanization and invisibility of the working class in urban imaginaries. His projects build counter-memory and contesting narratives that describe and disturb the relationship between communities and their environments.

Patil’s works have been shown at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, Kochi (2022-2023), Documenta fifteen, Kassel (2022), Yokohama Triennale, Yokohama (2020), Five Million Incidents at the Goethe-Institute / Max Mueller Bhavan, Delhi (2019), The Showroom, London (2018), Tensta Konsthall, Stockholm (2017), Centre Pompidou, Paris (2017), Pune Biennale Habit-co Habit, Pune (2017), Dakar Biennale, Dakar (2016), Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2015), ParaSite, Hong Kong (2014), and Kadist Art Foundation, Paris (2013).

Parul Sinha (b. 1992) is an artist whose work deals with the banality of daily life and the existence of objects within it. Her practice is an amalgamation of illustration and a hint of absurdity that makes familiar things appear estranged from common experience.

Sinha was part of a book publishing initiative in Minimajlis, Documenta 15, Kassel. She had a solo show at Metta Contemporary in Navi Mumbai in 2018. She has also been part of group shows at the Clark House Initiative in Mumbai, Gallery Latitude 28 in Delhi, and the Kochi-Muziris Student’s Biennale in 2016. She completed her M.F.A in painting from the College of Art, Delhi, in 2016.

Yalgaar Sanskrutik Manch (est. 2015) was founded with the aim of carrying out community work based on constitutional values at its core that include freedom, equality, justice, and universal friendship. The year 2014 was a critical year for many members that formed Yalgaar, after the widespread violence and killings of ideologues, and the suppression of freedom of expression in India. With this as a backdrop, they started an alternative cultural movement with liberation as its focus. Their practice centres around instigating a social awakening among people through street plays, public meetings, poetry recitations and songs. They experiment with videos, organise programmes through social media, conduct workshops to influence people in different places and promote ideas of egalitarianism through their plays and music. They collaborate with NGOs and cultural groups working on issues of women empowerment and constitutional rights. They do workshops in slums and with school children in Mumbai. They started Nirmik Arts and Media Center for content creation, video and audio production and a performing arts training centre. The members of Yalgaar often face financial and social problems but their quest for a free society and to produce art that brings about cultural awareness binds them together.

Art Dubai is the Middle East’s leading international art fair, taking place every March in Dubai, UAE. Over the past 16 years, Art Dubai has cemented its role in being a major catalyst in the local, regional and international conversations on art from the Middle East and surrounding region (MENASA – Middle East, North Africa & South Asia), and putting art from these territories onto the global map.

As one of the world’s most international art fairs, Art Dubai has further expanded its commitment to cultivating a culture of discovery, offering exciting new global perspectives and broadening conversations about art beyond traditional western-led geographical scopes and narratives. The fair drives meaningful engagement with the rich cultural heritage and contemporary art practices of the region and extending to territories across Southeast and Central Asia, the African continent, and Latin America through presentations across its gallery sections.