18 Jan – 03 Mar 2012
Gyan Panchal’s art is born out of a genuine investment in materials, affiliating it closely with Arte Povera. Using both industrial materials and organic matter, Panchal tends to the unique physical demands of his chosen objects, calling into question their contexts and proposing specific narratives. Early works are often based on the principles of construction: styrofoam and cable binders, stripped of their functionality, acquire a silent monumentality as sculpture, underlining the artist’s knowing appropriation of the technical components of Minimal art.
For his first show in Mumbai, Panchal has presented a group of objects that draw upon this city’s ability to transform itself. Throwaway fragments from marble-cutting workshops, khadi that hasn’t been finessed, brittle bamboo, the bark of a palm tree: to these homeless, abandoned items that are no longer of any use, he bestows the poise of ancient monuments. By extracting elements from their origins and expanding their possibilities through discreet gestures – sanding, polishing, a slight scratch or tear - he has created art that is fragile, restrained and powerful.