Absence Of An Architect

Page 1

dedicated to dilliwalas

absence of an architect | gigi scaria 10 - 31 august 2007


the city of forking paths by gayatri sinha 5 painting 13 photograph 31 site under construction - video 1 52 video - a parallel enquiry by gigi scaria 56 panic city - video 2 60 biography 66 bibliography 70 acknowledgments 72

The City of Forking Paths The city appears as a maze of bridges, galis, shop fronts, alleys,

and the shops, one broken by the artist when he made the first trips

metrolines, wells, man holes, malls, stalls, parks, heights, elevations.

to the local library. In the conservative Catholic scheme of things, any

Viewed like a map, it is a web of interdependencies networks, links,

inclination on the part of a young boy to read Dostoevsky rather than

connections, tracks that mark and name space, direction, level. With

weekly catechism would have posed a threat to the tenuous familial

every mark the less visible codes of class, status, hierarchy, and

fabric, one sustained in the face of a visible and vocal left politics. But

economy are inscribed into the city. Through combining a detached

the Church offered Gigi oblique opportunities for artistic exploration.

documentary engagement of the city with fictive mappings, Gigi Scaria

Of more enduring interest than Sunday school was the Christ figure,

invites the viewer to create his own imaginary narrative. What happens

redolent in Catholic churches that offered the first possibility of studies in human anatomy. With clay from the paddy field and his grandma

when the city loses its marks, names, directions, signs, inhabitants,

as guru, Gigi as a six year old had started to construct the agonized

vehicles? It becomes like a maze, the convolutions of a gut or a brain

figure on the cross. He learnt the details of the musculature and form

map perhaps, laid out with no sign of Where am I? Where do I go?

as defined by colonial and local priests. Further instruction came from

Where have I been? evolution of man 2006

reproduction of Renaissance painting and sculpture in the Malayalam Central to this body of work is the concern: if space is idea and aspiration,

magazine Bhasha Poshini.

whose desires does it fulfill? When the Tower of Babel was imagined,

Malayali Christian resistance to the presence of the left, to popular cinema

the inherent politics of architecture became a manifest metaphor. As a

as well as absorption at other levels of ethnicity made for a delicate

structure it became a symbol of incoherence; its walls emblematic of

negotiation in terms of cultural identity. Gigi’s response was to continue

the first borders between men. In the gradual progression from empire

to scour the local library. As he determined to be an artist he enrolled at

to nation, to city to buildings, the tower continues to remind us of space

the Government College of Fine Art, Thiruvananthapuram.

and structures as sites of exclusivity. In 1995, Gigi came with fellow artist Josh P. S. to Delhi. His first job was In his very considered body works titled Absence of an Architect,

with Bhagirathi art studio in Amar Colony where he illustrated nursery text

Gigi Scaria compresses the visual field of his city into a series of vistas,

books. In his next place of work, Naiwala gali in Karol Bagh he worked on

forcing an engagement with the political and social dimension of building

a school text book painted in gouache in the morning hours, with visits

structures. The fact that he works in three media – painting, photography

to the Lalit Kala library in the afternoon. In 1996, Gigi joined the Jamia

and video – allows for different levels of expressivity.

art department for a masters degree. At the same time his readings in

From Kothanalloor to Nai Dilli

contemporary Malayalam literature, of OV Vijayan and Ananth confirmed the artist’s position at the site of traversal, between history and society.

The long journey from South Delhi to Gigi Scaria’s studio in Rohini

Encoded in his personal journey was his perception of how he was seen

requires a map. Not unlike Scaria’s own journey from Kothanalloor village, Kottayam district, Kerala from a life informed by the village church

in Delhi - student, small budget, dark man. untitled 2006

as a centre of activity, the row of shops that his parents owned and

Migrant I Worker

their house adjacent to the shops. This triangle of activity was a safe

This present body of work comes on the heels of Gigi’s continuing

haven for the Scaria household between the village school, the church

engagement with the city as migrant/ worker. From his small flat and

studio in Rohini what the artist successfully communicates is the great

It is the same view, of physical distance, that Gigi assumes in his paintings.

desire to engage with the city as experiential base, the mirror of the

The series titled Options of an Alternative Master Plan are located within

migrant. Delhi as a city is impermanent, its structures malleable, its roads

the chaotic politics of the present, with the current announcement of the

fluid with surprise contours. It is a site under construction. In Panic City,

Master Plan for Delhi for 2021. Even as the city grows, swallowing up

(video, single projection), buildings loom and rise and slide out of vision.

fields, village tracks, towns, habitations, the question of location remains

Shot from a minaret of Jama Masjid, once the heart of Shahjahan’s

urgent. In Gigi’s view, the conventional volatile elements of the city – its

imperial India, this view engages the city, its poetry, its oppression, its

people – have all been erased. What we see instead is that its rooted

wretched eternality, a vision where is no relief, no pause even for a single

structures are rendered unstable. Hot, treeless cement facades present

breath of gladness. From the precipice of the minaret the artist abandons

a new vision of the city as uninhabitable. In the painting Keep Delhi Clean

the view of the biker or the pedestrian for a bird’s eye panorama. Where

the map of Delhi appears like a brick wall, which evacuates from within

the intense human detail is eroded and we see instead uneven structures

its borders every form of life, a travesty of the structure of the densely

that careen momentarily upwards as if in a moment of syncope, pushed

populous walled city of Old Delhi. In a sense this works like a mirror

to the edge of an insistent vertigo.

image of the work Opening Shortly, a grid of 49 photographs of shutters

Almost without deliberate intention, the artist as migrant stumbles upon the lost heterotopias of the past and the present. The city of Delhi was

In this labyrinth the artist enters different historical sites, from the pre

raised in historic spasms, becoming the ground of a shifting consolidation

Mughal step well of Agrasen ki Baoli to the shuttered exteriors of new

of empires, faiths, peoples, structures, aspirations.1 Gigi’s work reflects

shops. His camera mimics this encapsulation of history, zooming in from

the shifting nature of the city, its historical accretions, layers of migrancy

single shutter detail to panoramic views of the city. The photographs

and its elusive heart. This journey of the migrant translates into metaphors

on view represent the different accretions of Delhi, the uncomfortable



disjuncture between monument and building, between past and present,

labyrinth comes to represent our negotiations in the physical world, and

with their implicit questions of inclusivity and ‘value’. Like Borges,

the absolute limits of human knowledge. There are other cultural models

Gigi Scaria is not interested in developing a language of visual poetry, but

of the labyrinth. Here one may choose the intensely diagrammatic

works in the mode of the anthropologist/documentary maker – fulfilling

Sri Yantra, which with the intersection of 48 triangles creates a map

the view from the periphery. In this context the painting Delhi Mall rises

of metaphysical negotiation (as compared to the void of the journey

like an anomaly that draws into itself histories, aesthetics, and styles,

in the wilderness, of the Christ or the Buddha). This yantra sets up

like the ultimate architectural monstrosity Painted in the vivid colours of

routes, intersections, directions geometrically defined spaces that lead

calendar art, it mimics the collapsed vision of a hundred dreams, a lunatic

through seemingly impossible negotiations to a void/infinitude.3 Panic

heterotopia,4 one in which the DDA flat, Parliament House, a shopping

City abandons the intimate documentary tone of Gigi’s earlier works, A

mall, Jantar Mantar all come together in a terrible collusion of visions. This

Day with Sohail and Mariyan, (single channel video projection) and The

mad accretion challenges the idea of cultural specificity and location.

Interview, (three channel video projection) for this anxiety-inducing vision

Rearing like a Tower of Babel, where no one speaks the same language, it

of the avid, growing city.

also posits the idea of a fractured aesthetics and social dissonance.

of quest, seeking to negotiate a labyrinth. Like Borges’

A Day with Sohail and Mariyan video stills 2004

of shops, holding out the promise of a better life.

A Sociology of Structures

and Puram in ancient Tamil poetry between the private and the public,

Gigi’s particular position is to investigate how city structures, social

between the hearth and the public field, each of which invites a different

constructs, and the view of location is translated into social prejudice

language of expression. In numerous north Indian dialects, the schism

and class attitude. The video work titled Site Under Construction bears

between the personal and the familiar and the external and the ‘foreign’

many of the marks of the artist’s characteristic style, of an apparently

is the binary of desh/pardesh frequently used by the Bhakti poet Kabir on

innocuous conversation suggestive of a narrative, one that reveals at

different registers of metaphor. In this way the journey from Kothanalloor

its core, deeply ingrained prejudice. Two middle class neighbours, one

to Nai Dilli is problematized not only in terms of contemporary urbanism

a house maker, the other an architect reflect on a subject of mutual

and its relentless spread but at the metaphysical level of belonging and

concern, housing. Even as they speak an apparently poor labourer


sets out to ‘construct’ a small dwelling, in the courtyard, only to violently

Gayatri Sinha

demolish it. The site that is deconstructed is reminiscent as much of Gayatri Sinha is an independent critic and curator, she lives and works in Delhi.

the recent demolitions along Delhi’s streets as of the bull dozing of slum clusters, and the displacement of squatters within Delhi. Equally this work (like Gigi’s earlier The Interview) demonstrates the stereotype or the ‘reading’ of the migrant as poor, dark and homeless, an unwelcome squatter in the city’s public spaces. One may extend this image/narrative to a broader history of social exclusion, of seeking to expose the view and the attitude of the priviledged classes. Site under Construction bears interview video stills 2006

an active relationship with the photographic work of the same name. As

Footnotes I References

the eye gradually moves from left to right in this panoramic view of mean

1 Delhi as imperial city has been the site for Indraprastha (1450 BC) Lal Kot or Qila Rai

city huts the human presence dwindles and the cluster of huts appear gradually desolate and abandoned. Gigi Scaria’s work demands considered attention for its investigation of the issue of migrancy and displacement. One realizes with consternation that the artist/migrant like the labourer/migrant has only moved from one part of the country to the other, yet the issues of non-belonging echo the spirit of diaspora. But while the diaspora artist has the luxury of the evocation of the homeland, and devises a language of loss, the migrant within the homeland lacks even this singular pleasure. Scaria is of course not alone; the use of the context of desh/pardesh is repeated in multiple ancient medieval and modern contexts. In the volume Poems of Love and War.5 Ramanujam highlights the difference between Akkam


Pithora, (1060 AD) initiated by Rajput Tomaras in the mid 8th century and extended by the Chauhan kings; Siri, (1304 AD) built by Alauddin Khilji; Tughlaqabad (1321-23 AD) built by Ghiyasuddin Tughlaq; Jahanpanah (mid 14th century) built by Mohammadbin-Tughlaq; Ferozabad

(1354 AD) built by Feroze Tughlaq; Dilli Sher Shah

(Shergarh) (1534 AD) which was initiated by Humayun and extended by Sher Shah; Shahjahanabad or Old Delhi, mid 17th century built by Shahjahan, and finally Modern Delhi, built by the British in the 1920’s. 2 Labyrinths: Selected Stories & Other Writings by Jorge Luis Borges, New York: New Directions Publishing, 1964, edited by Donald A. Yates & James E. Irby. 3 For a fuller description of the Sri Yantra see Saundaryalahari, (trans.) VK Subramanian, Motilal Banarsidass, Delhi, 1993. 4 Michel Fouault Of Other spaces in The visual culture Reader ed Nicholas Mirzoeff Routledge NY, 2002. 5 Poems of Love and War, From the Eight Anthologies and Ten Long Poems of classical Tamil selected and translated by AK Ramanujam, OUP New Delhi, 1985.



keep delhi clean | acrylic on canvas | 72 x 72 inches | 2006



options of an alternate master plan/court | acrylic on canvas | 72 x 72 inches | 2006



city excavated | acrylic on canvas | 72 x 72 inches | 2006



options of an alternate master plan/city centre | acrylic on canvas | 72 x 72 inches | 2006



city within | acrylic on canvas | 60 x 60 inches | 2006



settlement | acrylic on canvas | 60 x 120 inches (diptych) | 2007



options of an alternate master plan/residential | acrylic on canvas | 72 x 72 inches | 2006



dilli mall | acrylic on canvas | 114 x 79 inches | 2006




absence of an architect | digital print on archival paper | 40 x 58 inches | 2006



east and west belongs to me | digital print on archival paper | 40 x 58 inches | 2006



city now and then | digital print on archival paper | 40 x 58 inches | 2006



hidden city | digital print on archival paper | 40 x 58 inches | 2006



mall alone | digital print on archival paper | 40 x 58 inches | 2006



city uprise | digital print on archival paper | 44 x 81 inches | 2006



opening shortly | digital print on archival paper | 77.5 x 38.5 inches | 2006



site under construction | digital print on archival paper | 32 x 88 inches | 2006




Video: A Parallel Enquiry | other encounters the self other

Do you think you need to talk about your video separately?


Not exactly; but I need to clarify certain things which are largely related to video.


Why should you ‘clarify’ anything? In that case whom do you address?

Does art need clarification?


How can art be separated from other human temperaments? Why do you think it needs no clarification or explanation? I think it should be debated throughout the process of production and post production.


I do agree. But what clarifications you have to make about your videos. They are primarily documentaries. They don’t need much explanation for others to understand.


Well, probably this is the reason why I need to clarify my position. Do you think they are documentaries? But I don’t think they are documentaries.






by Gigi Scaria

They do derive a lot from the documentary mode. In most of the cases they also deal with real characters. For example Sohail and Marian, Muhamed Kurshid Alam and that boy who finds metal pieces through a magnet from the street. You peep through their real life in each of these videos. That is what a documentary maker possibly does. Well I don’t differentiate my position from a documentary filmmaker (if at all you wish to call me that) in order to clarify that I am doing “video art”. I, essentially, don’t make separate categories for any moving image as film, video, animation etc. How can you say that? Film is different from video. And animation is totally a different thing. If you place all moving images into one category how do you place them in different disciplines? How do you distinguish and differentiate your own territory? You seem to talk like a spiritual Guru. Well, territory is an important subject to talk. How do you differentiate your own territory is even more important. But I must tell you that discipline never creates territories where as concept does. Therefore, I think categories have to be settled in terms of its conceptual thread rather than the appearance or the medium.


You mean to say that the likeness of the medium can never be a judgement point when you see a work?


I mean to say that medium can’t always be a message. In another way message can be generated even when you mishandle or misuse a medium. Even then if you have a total control over your medium

your message may skip through it and stay independently. other

That statement contains anarchy in its content. While saying this you are closing all possibilities of your own command over the medium as well as the content.


That is true. I can make it very clear for example when I had no intention to make a documentary you put my works in the documentary section. When my intented message was not limited to the ‘human condition’ you strictly viewed it as a plight of our social system. So how can you say that I have a control over what I did?


You caught me there! But it could also be a failure of your method of handling the medium. Or else your conceptual thread might have broken throughout the process.


I don’t deny this observation. But at the same time I do not completely give up my argument on the control over the medium.


You conceptualize something and when you have gone through the process of realizing it you might even arrive at another point and finally when it is made viewers might get a completely different sense of understanding. But my question is what is wrong with it? Can’t we accommodate all the mishaps and chance encounters into a broader frame of the process?


I do but I don’t do.


You are being rigid and rude when you say ‘you don’t do’.


But I said in first place ‘I do’ because I accept the possibility. Why I said I don’t because my works are not made of chance encounters and constant mishaps. Why should I deny my own intention when I conceptualize it? Why should I submit my own integrity to a broad generalization? (There is a plot and there is a plan)


Which means we cannot make much generalization, especially in your case. But there are certain general understandings through which even your video is watched and understood.


My attempt has always been to become extremely conscious not to get into that generalized pattern of viewing.


What have you done to break that pattern?


I can give examples of my two most recent videos to try to answer you. The first one titled Interview and the second is Site under construction. The first video is about a business executive interviewing a candidate for a fresh appointment in the company. He adopts a new method by asking the candidate to identify a photograph of a person as show on a screen. The candidate interviewed then starts guessing over the image of the unknown person he confronts on the screen with his


normal guessing power which is influenced by the social norms of categorizing people in terms of colour, attire, possessions and ethnic differences. The event has a linear progress except the fact that it was not shown in a linear fashion. I split the screen in three parts. The interviewer sat on the right side projection and the candidate sat on the left side. Whatever appears on the laptop of the interviewer appeared on the central screen. other

Instead of showing the entire video on one single projection you showed it in three separate screens. What is the big deal? People might have taken extra effort to watch it.


Well I would like to elaborate on this ‘extra effort’ people might have taken. When I split the screen in three in order to narrate a single story there two or three unexpected things happened. The first thing I had to make was to shoot the reactions of both, the interviewer and the candidate. When one asks a question the other one answers. But even before he answer a question you are also constantly listening to the question; which means their reactions or facial expressions have to be there on the other screen. Which again means what you watch in 6minutes duration is presented in front of you in 12 minutes. Yet you will watch it only in 6minutes.It somehow gives an understanding of time in a very different way.



Exactly. This ‘sense of missing’ in an event is an everyday occurrence in a day to day situation. Even if we witness an incident in its full clarity we miss many particles of the incident because of the limitation of viewing them all at one time. But persistence of memory recaptures the missing points of the incident and rearranges the story again in our memory cells.


How do you connect this notion of ‘persistence of memory’ as a conceptual thread to the video?




That is interesting. I think it also gives a ‘sense of missing’ through out the video because one can’t watch all the three projections at the same time. While watching one person you will definitely miss the other one’s reactions on the other screen.

That may be analysing too much of the process; but still I would like to connect it with the central theme of the video where the interviewed candidate was trying to figure out who in the picture is. The parameter he sets to assess the other is derived from the same notion of persistence of memory internalized by our social psyche. While connecting the missing links our social psyche generalizes upon the whole event to suit to an ‘urban logic’. So according to your interpretation this video questions the stereotype notion of our urban psyche which categorize each individual in

a set code. self

I do not know whether it “questions” as the academicians normally put it. But it observes silently the way we think and make unique observations about people or things; which is constructed by the logic of “generalization”. And it slowly infiltrates the logic of our own without any hint.


What about the second video the site under construction?


The site under construction captures a conversation between an architect and a house wife. They are largely strangers but might have been into a telephonic friendship for some time. While exchanging a few words to understand each other better both of them chance upon to look downwards from their 16th floor residential block. They see a man constructing something using the materials picked from the street. Initially they were curious to know what he is doing there. When they observe the man’s each and every action carefully their initial curiosity shifts into a guessing game. Both of them predict what the next action of the man would be. They almost succeed in guessing his next course of action. The man was trying to construct a shelter towards which he made a slow progression.


Suddenly the unexpected thing happens. The man upsets both of them and destroys whatever he had been constructing so far, am I right?


True. The excitement of the guessing game had an abrupt end.


What is this guessing game meant to you?


That is a very important question. I think, apart from the three projections with simultaneous actions this video operates within a symbolic language. Here the architect and the house wife represents a class which is supposed to monitor the so called developmental agenda prescribed by the state. They assume that ‘common man’ behave in a set pattern. They expect that each action will be done according to their guess.


But because of the lack of infrastructure the ‘fellow on the street’ fails to meet their expectations.




But don’t you think this has been an over symbolic interpretation? How can any one guess that these people represent state machinery and social structure?


Well, I am not adamant that people should read or understand this work only in this particular direction. While thinking through the incident and working out the concept and finally writing down the script I was under the spell of this symbolic meaning. But I was also quite sure





that I should not loose the theatrical charm of the plot.


Which means the final product will not go to the lab for processing.

So, then if this work is understood by people only as an unfortunate incident that takes place in the middle of the street witnessed by two people from a neighbourhood, will you be satisfied?




I still doubt about your strong conviction on film and video. Development of digital technology is making mind boggling experiments in new media art. You seem like stuck with an old mode of narration and not taking advantages of the skills and tools of technology.


There is a fundamental difference between using technology to realize your thought process or concepts and exploring in the technology to find new concepts and ideas. I probably place myself in the first place. It doesn’t mean that I don’t agree with or understand the other side. It also has to do with the behavioural pattern of a psyche and ones own obsession and eagerness to explore an area where you put your head in.


You have not said anything about your third video Panic city.


In Panic city I made a shift from what I have done earlier. I used digital images of the old city’s bird’s eye view and Flash animation in it. For me Panic city deals with fast erosion of the old/modern city scapes by the new world of corporates.


What is the significance of the western classical music you used in the video?


Western classical music comes in as a criticizing comment on the fundamental difference between the philosophy of the West and its native counter part (not exactly the eastern philosophy but the philosophy of the native culture.)


Which means you have used the western classical as western imperialism?


In a way yes. But it has nothing to do with the musical tradition of the west. I simply took the nature of dominance which very well reflects through the music of a classical era.


Most of your video contains strong reflections on social engagements. How involved you are when you make social statements through your art?


For me social engagement is a constant dialogue; a dialogue in which you include voices of the “other” constantly. The voice of the “other “is not only the voice of the marginalized but also of our own critical self. That is how you encountered me.


So the dialogue continues.

You can view this as simple as that. But there is always a reason behind each action we commit. Therefore, you will certainly be puzzled by the action of the man; who destroyed whatever he constructed. If that comes in your mind at the end of it I will be happy because that gives the thread for the rest of the meaning layers.


If I observe something strange; each of your video has very little video in it.


May be you are right. I don’t even want them to be called as videos except the fact that these were shot in video camera.


What are they then? Are they experimental films?


You can call it any name you like. Definition of a video has been widely debated now. It came to exist as an art form in the mid sixties or early seventies. Video had distinguished features when it was initially established as an art form. It fundamentally differed from the film because of the technological advantages, (suppose what you have recorded can be seen at the same time unlike the film) fluid structure (layers of images can be made easily) and could capture day today events as a spectator. And it also allowed opening up a range of innovative and radical ways of expanding personal view points. Which means video makes the film more personal.


Don’t you think that film also holds the same possibilities?


That is where I am coming to now. The initial difference between film and video could not stay for a long time because of the technological advancements and the computerization of the visual media world. Then the distinguished features of the film and video started reciprocating. At one stage some of the well known video artists had their production cost equivalent to the film production.


In short you don’t find any difference between a film and a video?


Well, as I said earlier, there were many differences, even still you can make that difference but I would like to say my practice of video making is directly derived from the language of film. We have several examples to prove how a time oriented structured discipline called cinema undertook the contemporary psyche through underworld, new wave, experimental and parallel streams of our culture.


Then for you what is the meaning of video?


The dialogue will continue with more alertness and urgency.


For me it is only a technical devise.


I will defiantly intervene so as not to get it into a monologue.




site under construction | video projection with sound (3 channel) | duration 7min | 2006









Solo Shows 2007

Absence of an Architect, video installations paintings and photographs at Palette Gallery New Delhi


Where are the Amerindians? At Inter America Space at CCA7, Trinid


Exhibition of recent works at Art Inc., Shahpur Jat, New Delhi


Exhibition of paintings and sculptures at The Great Art Gallery, New Delhi


gigi scaria

1973 born in Kothanalloor, Kerala, India



M.F.A. (painting), Jamia Millia University, New Delhi.


B.F.A. (painting), College of Fine Arts, Thiruvananthapuram.


Reflections, Refractions and Refutations: New and recent work by artists from India, Soulflower Gallery, Bangkok

Public Places/Private Spaces: Contemporary Photography and Video Art in India, Curated by Gayatri Sinha at The Newark Museum, New Jersy, USA

After Shock Conflict, Violence and Resolution in Contemporary Art, a group show supported by Sainsbury Centre in collaboration Matthew Shaul and the UH Galleries in England curated by Yasmin Zahir

Indian photo and Media Art: a journey of Discovery at Vienna, Austria

Horn Please: Narratives in contemporary Indian Art at Kunstmuseam Bern, Switzerland

Dreaming Childhood at Leap Years, Vasant Kunj, New Delhi

Making History Our Own, Organized by SAHMAT at AIFACS Gallery, New Delhi

Young & Free at Intercontinental, Nehru Place, New Delhi

World Social Forum, Nairoby


ROCK curated by Himanshu Desai at Kitab Mahal, Mumbai

Rencontres Internationales Paris/Berlin 2006, a film and video festival in Paris and Berlin

Paper Flute curated by Johny M L at Gallery Espace, New Delhi

Impossible India at Frankfurt Kunstverein, curated by Nina Montmann supported by Goethe-Institute, Germany

Ghost in the machine and other stories (video, interactive media and sound) at Apeejay Media Gallery, Delhi. Curated by Pooja Sood

REAL 2006 organized by Matters of art.com at Visual Art Gallery, Habitat Centre, New Delhi

Dilli Dur Ast, a lens based workshop in the walled city of Delhi

Art for Prabhat, artists paint on paper made by mentally handicapped Students at Visual Art Gallery, Habitat Centre, New Delhi

Infinite-Us at Planet Art Gallery, Gurgaon, Haryana.

Art in Cinema at Habitat Center, New Delhi


Eternal Recurrence-Return at Shangrila Hotel, New Delhi

Double – Enders at Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

Self x Social Self, stranger parent resource worker at School of Arts and Aesthetics Gallery JNU New Delhi, curated by Geeta Kapur.

Are we like this only? at Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi, curated by Vidya Shivdas. Organized by Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi


Journeys at Visual Arts Gallery, Habitat Centre, New Delhi


Median an exhibition of paintings & sculptures at Epiques Gallery, Green Park New Delhi


GASTHOF 2002, an event organized by Stadelschule at Frankfurt, Germany

Worked for a month at College of Fine Arts, Sydney, Australia in Connection with an exhibition project, Indians + Cowboys Khoj International artists workshop at Modinagar

Between Rivers at C-28 West End, New Delhi

Making of India organized by SAHAMAT at Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi


Crossing Generations Diverge at National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai, curated by Geeta Kapur and Chaitanya Sambrani


Indians + Cowboys at Gallery 4A, Asian-Australia Arts Center, Sydney Australia, curated by Ruth Watson

Scholarships I Award

Arting Jerusalem, an art project at Jerusalem, Israel

Shisha, an exhibition of Indian and French artists at Sanskriti Pratisthan, Qutab Institutional Area, New Delhi. Latter travelled to France

Invasions an Exhibition of Creative Posters at Palm Court Gallery, Habitat Centre, New Delhi


Photographica at Cittadellarte, Biella, Italy

Circo Fragile a story telling event at Pavia University Italy


At Inter America Space, CCA7, Trinidad and Tobago

Unidee in Progress at Pistoletto Foundation, Biella, Italy

At Rabindra Bhavan Auditorium, Mandi House, New Delhi


Millennium Vision at Arushi Art Gallery, Delhi


At conservatory, Birmingham University, England

Small but significant, a group show at Arpana Fine Arts, Delhi

Art for Prabhat, artists paint on paper made by mentally handicapped Students at Arpana Fine Arts, Delhi

List of videos 2007

Panic City Video Duration 3 min

‌and Buddha Smiled Again, organized by Master’s Guild at Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage, 71, Lodi Estate, New Delhi

Site Under Construction, Video Duration 7min

KHOJ BOX, at Art Inc. Shahpur Jat, New Delhi

Raise your hand those who have touched him (multi channel video installation), Video Duration 33min

Ego Containers, a collection of boxes by selected artists at Alter Ego an Adornment store


Yeh Tera Ghar Yeh Mera Ghar, Video Duration 10min


Explorations, a site-specific installation project organized by Jamia Millia University, New Delhi

Picture Perfect, Video Duration 8min 28 sec.


Kalamela, at Bal Bhavan, New Delhi

Search, Video Duration 5min

Travelling Exhibition organized by Kerala Lalit Kala Akademi, exhibited in Madras and Bangalore

Chitli Qubar, Video Duration 6min


Group show 95, an exhibition of painting and graphics, at Thiruvananthapuram Fine Arts Gallery

Sleep, Video Duration 3min


Annual Exhibition conducted by Kerala Lalit Kala Akademi

Interview, Video Duration 6min 27 sec.


Snakes and Ladders, Video Duration 4min

The Lost City, Video Duration 14min

Bai ka (jha) gada, Video Duration 17min 19sec

Home: in/out, Video Duration 52min

Between you and me, Video Duration 5min


A Day with Sohail and Mariyan, Video Duration 17min


Excavations, Video Duration 5min

Residency 2005

At CCA7 (Caribbean Contemporary Arts), Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies


At Khoj Studios, Khirkee Village, New Delhi


Unidee, at Cittadellarte, Foundation Pistoletto, Biella, Italy.




Sanskriti Award in Visual Art


Awarded Inlaks Scholarship

1995-97 Ministry of Human Resources and Development, Scholarship for Visual Arts Slide show and talk


Dilli Dur Ast, a lens based workshop in the walled city of Delhi.

Wounded, Video Duration 9min.16sec


Sandarbh, an artist workshop and residency programme organized by Beneshwer Lok Vikas Sansthan at Partapur, Rajasthan

A dialogue on Bilateral Issues, Video Duration 7min


Stampa, Video Duration 3min. 30 Sec.


Bibliography 1.

Presence through Absence and the Art of Slowing Down Written by Yasmin Canvin, published by Sainsbury Center for Visual Arts, UEA Norwich, 2007


The City of Forking Paths – Recent works by Gigi Scaria By Gayatri Sinha published in the catalogue titled Absents of an Architect, Publisher: Palette Gallery, New Delhi.2007.


The self, out there Written by Shruti Ravindran, Published in Outlook weekly news magazine, Published for the week of June 26-July 2, published by Outlook Publishing (India) Pvt. Ltd. New Delhi 2007


Reading paint (Exhibition Review) Written by Norachai Thavisin, Published in Fine Art, The art news magazine of Thailand, Volume 4 No.30, March 2007


Mapping the Marginalized: Gigi Scaria Essay written by Ramesh Kumar, Self x Social, School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi 2005


Sanskriti Awards (booklet) Published by Sanskriti Pratishthan, New Delhi 2005


Are we like this only? Written by Vidya Shivadas. Published by Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi. 19 March 2005


Footnotes to an itinerary for divergence Written by Geeta Kapur, Crossing Generations: diverge Published by Gallery Chemould, Mumbai, 2nd December2003.

Acknowledgements 9. Indians + Cowboys Written by Ruth Watson, Sidney, Australia 2002 10. Photografica 2002 Le montagne del mondo Published by Citta di Biella, Assessorato alla Cultura, 2002 11. KHOJ 2001 Published by KHOJ International Artist’s Association, edited by Pooja Sood, New Delhi 2002


Gayatri Sinha

Rohit Gandhi

Aditi Khurana

Sohail Hashmi

Atul Bhalla Gourav Khera

Arunkumar H G Tomas Koshi

Josh P S

Manoj V

Ranjita Chaney Monica Bhowmik Vijayaraghavan S

Madhu V

Pooja Sood Manushi Prerna


My Parents Gigi would like to thank the above individuals for their support and encouragement


Catalogue Š Pallete Art Gallery I Essay Š Gayatri Sinha I Photography Yogesh Salhotra I Designed & Printed at Solar Print Process, New Delhi Tel.: 011-66501000-04