Curation as Writing/Exhibition as Book – Part III: Amar Kanwar

Appropriately then, artist Amar Kanwar concluded the session with a presentation addressing his experience in documenting the lives of various subjects, in particular Burmese people, for his video, photography and installation work. Bringing to mind the earlier discussion prompted by Martinez’s encounter with the Benjamin archives, Kanwar feels overwhelmed by the volume of oral material ‘swirling around’, undocumented and absent. His practice is a constant struggle to adequately understand and document the experience of his subjects, and his finished works are an attempt to conceive of a format containing different experiences of the passage of time – an overlapping of past, present and future which looped us back to Durmusoglu’s Future Queer exhibition. In her response, Kapur pondered the three qualities or surfaces raised in these final presentations: copy, mirror and absence, noting the ‘natural ellipses of meaning’ that had recurred throughout.

amar

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