Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art

kathajaal: A Web of Stories


Sharmila Samant/ Kathajaal: A Web of Stories
Research and Artist- in- residency project with the local Goan/ Konkani community

Co-curated by Makiko Hara (Centre A) & Haema Sivanesan (SAVAC, Toronto)

Exhibition: September 9 – October 18
Artist and Curators talk: Tuesday, September 9th: 7 pm
Opening: Tuesday, September 9th: 8 pm

Sharmila Samant is a major contemporary Indian artist living and working in Mumbai. Samant is also a founder of art collective called “Open Circle” and has been organized numerous exhibition, workshop, sceening events and officially organized a cultural event in Mumbai for the World Social Forum in 2004. As an individual artist, she deals with issues of local identity within the context of globalization. Samant examines the homogenizing effect of commodification and consumer culture in relation to developing economies. Visiting Canada for the first time, Samant will undertake research with the Goan community in Toronto, Mississauga and Vancouver and develop an installation and artist book project titled “Kathajaal: A Web of Stories”.

Kathajaal: A Web of Stories will examine factors informing the return immigration of Indo-Canadians to India. Samant uses a multi-disciplinary approach, working in photography, installation and video.

Samant states, “The projects I undertake involve eclectic collecting, documenting and recycling of urban debris, looking at the mundane and the profane. The works critique the market forces that define the cultural and art practices of the peripheral nations and question how our identities, within the global set up, can be sustained via a hybridization of our culture.

Samant’s work has been included in major international exhibitions and biennales including ”The Biennale of Sydney: Revolution – Forms that Turn” (2008); “Edge of Desire: Recent Art in India”, The Asia Society, New York, (touring, 2004 -2007); “Century City – Art and Culture in the Modern Metropolis”, The Tate Modern, London, (2001).

Sharmila Samant/ Kathajaal: A Web of Stories is organized in collaboration with SAVAC, the City of Mississauga Office of Arts and Culture, and with the assistance of the Art Gallery of Mississauga and the Mississauga Central Library..The project is co-curated with Haema Sivanessan (SAVAC) and Makiko Hara (Centre A) and will be presented in Mississauga Art Gallery prior to Vancouver.

Press Coverage
Goan community featured in artist’s new project – Asian Post – Sept 24  (PDF 1.1MB)