March 17 – April 9

Kalakendra, Bharat Nivas

Corinne talks with Marc as he prepares for the upcoming Litter Free AV event Thoughts on trash art…

Can you really combine art and waste?

Isn’t art supposed to be beautiful, something you want to look at, that makes you feel good and inspires you to great things in life? And isn’t waste garbage? The things you want to discard and never want to see again?

So what incites artists to want to create out of waste? What is their main motivation? And, to go further, what is their true motivation? Contemporary art has reflected its preoccupation with discarded material. Some artists make everything out of nothing, and this nothing could end up being useful. Some, like Dariya, an Aurovilian artist who published a book of collages from discarded newspapers and magazines, create an inspiring and natural beauty of figures with a fearless attitude of play.

Overall, I could classify trash art as a breakdown of pre-existing materials to reinterpret them and to offer them a new form with a new purpose. But trash art is not only for the avant-garde or for the ecologically-conscious and a conversation with Marc Barandard, one of the artists running the Upcycling Studio and managing the Litter Free AV event, describes what art and waste could really symbolise. I was not convinced that activist talk about consciousness of waste and garbage in the community and the world could really create art that touches by its beauty. Marc countered my skepticism with strong words: “There is no limit in art, the limit is yourself, also there is no boundary between art and nature.”

He underlined this by adding, “I like things to be different, I feel different and unique, I’m conscious of my individuality and I want to live it well. In 1990, Marc won the Prix Jeune Créateur at the Salon du Meuble by le Jury du Grand Prix de la Critique du Meuble Contemporain for his original furniture design. This encouraged him to further his creative exploration in design.

Is he an alchemist who wants to turn trash into gold?
Does he want to prove subconsciously that death can be defeated by transformation?
Does he want to show us that with belief and passion an abandoned item can become beautiful?
Can the beauty of reformed trash sincerely amaze YOU?

Come to the exhibition of Trash Art at Kalakendra and find out!

This article was written by Chana Corinne Devor for Auroville Art Service. Presently exploring Auroville, she is an art critic and writes for international travel and spiritual magazines.