Divya, is a young artist based in Bangalore, India. She completed her bachelor studies in 2018. She studied Contemporary Art Practices and Visual Communication at Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, Bangalore, India. Guided by a process of critical and contextual engagement, Divya likes to experiment with various media in her works.
Solo shows• Cerebral Romance Diaries - Archives at NCBS, Bangalore, India, 2019
Ongoing shows at the wrong, November, 2019 - March, 2020• Big or Bigggest, Copenhagen, Denmark• Very Large Works, online • the burrow, online
Group shows• Instagram Exhibit of Atelier - Radio Atelier, Montreal, Canada, 2018 • I Came, I Saw, I Bought - 1ShanthiRoad, Bangalore, India, 2018
Student shows• In and Around Liliput Island - Srishti Institute of Art, Design and Technology, 2018• Meeting Differences - Aditi Malya School, Bangalore, India, 2017
Medium: Video of some performance pieces | Duration: 15 mins | Year: 2018
The video piece begins with a song, composed by a personal AI assistant. It dictates activities which need to be performed by its user, dibdubdrib, throughout the day. She shifts from being ‘sensual' to a ‘good girl' across the performances.
It is possible to represent oneself in a myriad of personalities on the internet, and yet there is a certain disciplinary control of surveillance embedded within these evolving networks. Often, women broadcasting themselves tend to imitate already existing content on television and social media. This entrenchment of content creates certain toxic and absurd norms for the performance of femininity.
Through this lens of feminine performance, the project looks into surveillance practices enabled by digital technologies and highlights the behavioural impacts of being under surveillance. Informed by Jeremy Bentham’s prison model of the panopticon, I attempt to look at its continuation in disciplinary surveillance tendencies present in today’s society.
link to the video: https://vimeo.com/275134443
Medium: Water colour paintings, 20 | Dimensions: 8.3 x 11.7 and 5.8 x 8.3 | Year: 2017
In this project, I worked around matrimonial sites and columns to explore how women and men present themselves in online spaces. This work looks at different kinds of people who attribute qualities to themselves. Potential Life-partner is a series of paintings that are replications of matrimonial profile photographs uploaded on the internet. These profiles were selected from two of the most popular Indian matrimonial websites, BharatMatrimony.com and Jeevansaathi.com. The profiles are not only created by people looking for an arranged marriage but also by their family members, who operate the account on their behalf.
I created two profiles - one for my father and one for myself to look for prospective brides and grooms. I filtered them based on some normative characteristics, such as, mother tongue, caste, skin complexion, income and so on.The websites then display recommendations of ‘suitable matches' based on categories such as gender, caste, religion, age, physical appearance, economic class and so on. This process existed prior to the internet age and continues as it was accepted, now on digital platforms. The algorithms created for such websites use the above parameters as variables for people to pass through a ‘codified society’. Whereas some remain rejected from the loop if they fail to perform normative gender roles. Self-presentation becomes a huge part of cracking the ‘algorithm’ for desired outcomes.
Medium: Plastic water bottles, plastic covers | Dimensions: 13.4 x 9.8 x 11.2 (approx.)
Conduit showcases two contrasting forms that plastic bottles are present in- neatly packaged and trash. The work takes its form to represent the vicious cycle of production, distribution and wastage of bottled water.
Bottled water is a product of an ever-growing consumer culture. Its binge consumption exceeds recycling efforts, polluting water bodies and the ecosystem. Majority of the plastic bottles being produced are for drinking water. And brands are hesitant to use 100% recyclable plastic because the bottles would not be as shiny. Ironically, water bottles are bought for a healthy living. Used bottles are then dumped into oceans, where resources for plastic are in-turn extracted from.
Medium: Instagram account, digital images, 14
The Instagram account, lorelei_artsymalik, is made by executing instructions from a Forbes list - enumerating ways to get popular on the social media platform. '50 Free Ways To Increase Your Instagram Followers' consists of points ranging from the time of posting, hashtag usage, to content selection. The list is a product of several software analysed statistics which are carried out using information of large number of popular Instagram handles.
I followed the tips in an attempt to generate an account that replicates existing trends and patterns of popularity on social media platforms. A widespread acceptance of such generalised pointers leads to a variety of absurdly stylised content, simultaneously emulating and parodying these popular aesthetics.
link to the instagram handle: https://www.instagram.com/lorelei_artsymalik/
Medium: Canvas sheets, variable, 5 | Dimensions:8.3 x 11.7
Human Being is a series of paintings made out of face and body products. This work was produced in an attempt to reflect on standardised notions of beauty promoted by corporations and media. It highlights the influence of ad content in restraining freedom of the consumer from maintaining unique identities.
I provided a canvas and an instruction sheet (see below) to some of my peers. Each then painted on the canvases as they performed daily routines of applying body wash, face cream, makeup, etc.
Cerebral Romance Diaries
Medium: Zine, drawings, texts, agar drawings | Year: 2019
Cerebral Romance Diaries, unfolds a series of work within an installation set up. It features an artist’s book that fragments into a set of cards, textual work on glass and drawings on agar. The work is an ongoing engagement with the Archives at NCBS. It draws from the idea of recycling the material that got left behind from the archives. It is also an attempt to recast material from lab notebooks into an art piece. The book questions the construct of today’s popular self-help books. It invites the readers for a personal and exploratory participation by offering three absurd exercises. Unlike in the self-help books that flatten experience, these exercises allow more space for imagination.
link to the online version: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1J9x9Ycrj3rl6VTUkCV7agK8saztWEC_3