Sneha Sikand of Saffronart on Mithu Sen’s latest project in Poland
Poznań: The third edition of the Mediations Biennale, titled THE UNKNOWN – NIEPOJMOWALNE is currently underway in Poznań, Poland. Starting out as an art festival in 1999, the biennale has evolved from being just an art event to a full blown organisational enterprise.
The format of the event moves away from merely presenting the works of art. It is divided into two stages. In the preparatory stage, research is carried out on the theme chosen. In the thinking stage, the collective works of the artists, researchers, and curators along with discussions taking place during the event are compiled to formulate new ideas and perspectives corresponding with the chosen theme.
Curated by Fumio Nanjo, director of the Mori Art Museum, Mithu Sen translates the theme of the biennale in her work by reflecting on dental prosthesis. The act of biting, and of chattering teeth shows how our bodies react to pain, fear and horror. Just like the theme suggests, the unknown is as exciting and intense as something which we already comprehend. Sen suggests that our teeth and mouth act as agents of exploration into the unknown – “It is like a gateway to the inner self”. In a recent interview, Mithu Sen elaborates on her artistic representations of body parts to metaphorically convey basic human emotion.
Talking about the event, Tomasz Wendland, director of the 2012 Mediations Biennale says that reality today is all about closing the gaps. “It does not matter that we do not understand what we see, since it is the context that matters”. He feels that individuals are curious about that which is inaccessible and in effect ‘unknown’.
The biennale is scheduled to run till October 14, 2012.