In undated Nightskin, illumination and darkness form a central axis in Chittrovanu Mazumdar’s work. The Indo-French artist’s installations are punctuated by a sense of disembodi- ment and meditations on the subjective experience of time.
At the heart of Mazumdar’s work sits the inevitable tension between dark and light. Darkness forms a first impression. Swelling and pervasive, it evokes vulnera- bility and desire. In the dark, we experience total blind- ness, our surroundings are illegible. The artist’s work is the story of this long night.
The emergence of light is subdued and revelatory.
It is a light that is precious, only allowed to blink and flicker, and dim for fear it will be lost. This is not the light of Kolkata, the artist’s home, a sprawling, electrified city in Eastern India. Instead, Mazumdar evokes the light of Jharkhand, a small, impoverished state nearby. He returns to Jharkhand again and again, to the land passed down from his father, experiencing the endless darkness of this alien place. There, light is an encounter beyond commodity. In Jharkhand, light is deified.