ISCP Residency Recipient 2018: Mochu
I am a video artist and film-maker. My recent projects over the last two years have combined text, video and still images to develop techno-fictions based on the legacies of cybernetic theory and psychedelic subcultures. Together they constitute a kind of shadow side of the Modernist project while also being a by-product of many utopian ideas and anti-colonial resistance movements. The remains of the pop culture of the 60's and 70's psychedelia in the hippie trails of India formed the primary geographic axis for this exploration. It is also a study of the ruins of a particular form of transnational utopianism and their subsequent metamorphoses into undead cultural tropes, characterised by the special-effects of decay.
This enquiry proceeds from my previous projects where I examined the overlaps in orientalist imagery and science fiction. These works explore specific art historical instances and their various mutations on encounter with technological imaginaries, for eg. the animation based on the aquatints of Thomas and William Daniells or the Mughal miniature paintings of Ustad Mansur. In the case of my video on the Modernist painter Ramanujam, the focus was on the particular syntax of speculative imagery within Indian Modern painting. The research within this project also branched off briefly into an examination of the history of Art Brut and the imagery of insanity, primitivism and 'naive' figuration.
At the ISCP Residency I intend to expand on the conceptual framework of my study on counterculture practices and fringe collectives and trace their contributions to the material, financial and computational acceleration of the present.
All images are courtesy the artist.