Kochi: Artists, through their creative works, can better communicate with the common masses than scientists do and easily bring awareness when it comes to serious subjects like climate change, said Muralee Thummarukudy, internationally-renowned disaster management expert.
Climate change is a major theme reflected by many of the arts works on display at the Biennale. “It is highly significant in present-day life. Strong responses to climate change can be seen and interpreted from many of the installations and photographs put on display,” Muralee, Thummarukudy, currently serving as Programme Director, UN Ecosystem Global Restoration at Bonn, Germany, added.
He was speaking after visiting the Kochi Muziris Biennale at Fort Kochi Aspinwall House.
“The important thing is that so many people are arriving to have a first-hand experience of the art fest. Right from its inception, I’m a regular at all the editions of the Kochi Muziris Biennale till now. I have visited many Biennales around the world. But a Biennale with the kind of public participation as seen in the Kochi Biennale cannot be witnessed elsewhere. Even the famous Venice Biennale does not see such big participation from the common masses. This is a big surprise. Such goodwill for contemporary arts from the general public and their nurturing of a bond with the field of arts were not common before. The Kochi Biennale brought a big change in this regard,” opined Muralee Thummarukudy.
In the exhibition ‘Lokame Tharavadu’ held at Alappuzha, many places which normally lay dormant and useless were given a facelift and transformed into space for artists. Those exhibitions uplifted the spirit of people, including artists who had to lock themselves at home during the pandemic. Such acts convey many meanings, he pointed out.
“After reaching home from Germany, the Biennale visit was decided as the first programme in my itinerary because it is that important,” Muralee said.
A 10-member team of IAS trainees also came to see the Biennale on Sunday. Trainees from various parts of India, including Odisha native Anoop Kher of the Kerala cadre, visited the Biennale. They had come to Kochi from the Lal Bahadur Shastri National Administration Academy in Mussoorie as part of their study tour. “Unlike the usual art exhibitions, anything seen in the world around you, including contemporary problems, can be presented as creations through the eye of an artist – this is the realization that Biennale sights bring upon you,” said team leader Sripooja Thirumani of Andhra Pradesh.
C.M. Raveendran, Additional Private Secretary to Chief Minister, C.H. Lingaraj, IG CRPF, and Dr George Jose, Anthropologist at New York University, Abu Dhabi, also visited the Biennale.
Report : Aishwarya’