Curated by: Myna Mukherjee, Davide Quadrio
The exhibition at the MAO includes works of the contemporary Renaissance that iconize and at the same time obliterate the same classicism to which they refer. The works are rooted in a legacy that examines
traditional styles, schools and genres and goes further to establish a relationship, a dialogue with them. While interests have changed with the vagaries of time, the forms of these works have obsessively preserved similar patterns, resonating with remnants of the past. Like in a Philip Glass concert, where each iteration sounds familiar but the accumulation of successive iterations makes each of them a unique and different experience.
One of the highlights of the exhibition is a radical section of neo-miniaturists who borrow the evocative, stylized and gemstone decorations of traditional miniaturist styles and vasli paintings, subverting them to explore ways in which to expand and dismantle the vocabulary of a seemingly insular style .
Even the art of the Himalayan Region will offer great suggestions, thanks to the installation of a series of works by the artist Paula Sengupta entitled The plain of Aspiration, a project that talks about the diaspora of Tibetans who fled their country following the departure of the Dalai Lama in 1959 and the attempt to preserve their lifestyle and culture elsewhere, through memory.
Sengupta's works draw heavily on the tradition of Tibetan textile craftsmanship and religious symbolism and, in the galleries of the MAO, they are combined with the works of the section dedicated to carved wooden covers.