Posted inArt

Making the Personal Collective at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale, Part 2

KOCHI, India — Pepper House is a quaint colonial structure with a lush central courtyard on the Kochi seafront, and serves as a major Biennale venue with some extraordinary displays — Alex Mathew’s monumental anchor rising upward in a surreal bid to touch the sky overhead greets you as you walk in. Named after the once-thriving spice port of Kochi (Kerala, India) the Kochi-Muziris Biennale succeeds in part because of the organizing committee’s courageous curatorial strategy to allow artists the rare final say in the installation of their work. Also, despite bringing together an international array of art-makers, the biennale’s focus is unequivocally on the Indian, initiating a restructuring of the paradigm of the “contemporary” in the country’s national art.