Artist duo, Thukral & Tagra draw from the Museum's collection of ancient and traditional games, exploring the idea of 'play' from cultural, strategic, physical and psychological perspectives. They envision the Museum as a gaming arena, where games are categorized into the physical, mental and spiritual, spanning the past, present and future. The artists have reinvented these games to create experiences that are both playful and serious. The viewer is challenged to think about life's many aspects as a game of chance and to reflect on the nature of their participation in both life and art. The works explore tradition through a contemporary sensibility.
In selecting the game of Ganjifa from the Museum's collection of traditional games as the framing device for their exhibition the artists have responded both to the form and symbolism inherent in the game. The representation of the Dashavtars on the Ganjifa cards have inspired the artists to create their own larger than life version that becomes both a homage to the skill of craftsmanship and a modern temple. In other exhibits the artists play with the colonial era collection making tongue in cheek references to colonial history.
Thukral & Tagra work collaboratively in a wide variety of media including painting, sculpture, installation, film and design. In their practice, they blur the line between fine art and popular culture, product development and exhibition design, artistic inspiration and media tropes. Their work is sharp, humorous, and questions the construction of identity as it is articulated through visual media both locally and interpreted internationally.
This show is part of the series of curated exhibitions titled 'Engaging Traditions'. Artists are invited to respond to the Museum's collection, history and archives, addressing issues that speak directly to the traditions and issues that underlie the founding of the Museum, yet evoke the present by challenging orthodoxies and questioning assumptions.
Free and open to all tours of the exhibition in English, Hindi and Marathi will be conducted by the Museum’s curatorial team every Saturday and Sunday till July 28, 2015. No prior registration required.
This summer come and play at the Museum! Try your hand at new games created by the artist duo Thukral and Tagra, such as Walk of Life, Verbal Kabbadi and a very special version of Table Tennis. On May 2 & 30, visit the Museum Plaza to play games inspired by the Museum’s collection of traditional indoor and outdoor games as well.