I don’t feel like a part of this anymore.On ChandraMohan’s arrest

I don’t feel like I’m a part of this anymore.

Here’s why

“The visuals included a Christ like image on the cross and his private parts being exposed and a few nude drawings of a few ‘deity’ like figurines.”

“He responded by saying if MF Hussain did it then so can I. That I think did him in.”

-from Amitabh Kumar’s writings called Barodascape on the Sarai Reader List. .

The Art History department as a response to the arrest of a student over his print put up images of erotica existent in the art of the subcontinent. There is no erotica in any tradition that employs any image remotely close to depictions of Christ. Jesus Christ (peace be upon him) led a life alone.

I would be offended with an image like that. I donot hold dear the image of Crucifixion, but this sort of depiction defiles the regard I have for a prophet of God.

The justification he put forth was, however interesting. MF Hussain’s depictions of women and goddesses have always ignited controversy. He paints them naked, clothed, however he wishes. Some could be interpreted sexually but by no means are the Indian goddesses devoid of sexuality. Sexuality is an integral part of the cult of any Goddess.

The argument on behalf of the offender has been freedom of expression and purity of intention, but on grounds of artistic responsibility, I find the young student lackadaisical.

*written as a post script to Whose Morality?, on the events following the arrest of an art student over a print he displayed as part of his exam work at the Faculty of Fine Art, M S University, Vadodara.

Alternate and supportive points of view here

Partha Chatterjee on Matters of Art .com

Dr. Ram Puniyani on his site, pluralindia.com

Satyanand Mohan, Baroda based artist on art concerns.com


3 thoughts on “I don’t feel like a part of this anymore.On ChandraMohan’s arrest

  1. I read this short story about a woman who was lying on her sunroof and sunning herself topless. Somewhere out on the open prairie. Then as she was lying there Jesus walked across the fields and came up and sat down with her. Naturally she was embarrassed and tried to cover herself but she couldn’t cause a wind came up and pulled at her robe and exposed her breasts. Finally she gave up and just let it lie open. Then she and Jesus had a conversation. Don’t remember what she asked but when he started to speak all the words came out in dark silences. Or something like that. The sexuality of the moment was reduced to its proper perspective. I read it maybe 20 years ago and I still remember it. The message was powerfully and simply told. It was a collection of women’s stories. I think the author was Canadian.

    I think what you have with the semi-erotic sculpture is maybe something similar. What is really sacred? The images of sanctity we erect in our mind speak to our comfort zone. We hold them to be inviolate. But is it valid? Maybe some re-examination is in order?

    Great blog. Love it. 🙂 Am glad I found it. [via] TakingITGlobal.org

  2. Thanks for the story!
    You’re right about the subjectivity of sexual experience.I’m working on a lengthier write up about art and the sacred, so watch out for that.
    My views are mine, not inviolable by any means.
    And its perhaps impossible to create something without it hurting anybody.
    More on this coming up!

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