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Radical Housing and Socially-Engaged Art

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Shailesh’s Work at Khoj, works with the idea the frequent tremors experienced by Delhi – The Earthquake is something he has only heard of. The consolidation in terms of Iron Support and the dense structurality of Khirkee find a correlation for him in the myth of Vishnu’s Varaha Avatar, where he takes the form of a Boar to rescue Bhudevi (Earth) from the demon Hiranyaksha who stole the earth and hid her in the primordial waters. Varaha slew the demon and retrieved the Earth from the ocean, lifting it on his tusks, and restored Bhudevi to her place in the universe. He imagines the myth as one filled with tremor yet as a tremor that signifies protection and safety. He imagines the turbulence then as the lifting of the earth by the Varaha Avatar on his tusks, reappropriating the very idea of an earthquake and its daunting implications. His work will involve a series of drawings completed with text that greatly derives from his own thoughts and musings over the idea of an Earthquake and the symbolism of the Boar. This will further into a series of stationary as well as interactive sculptures (simple machines) to express his ideas rather playfully leading the viewer to his fascination with the subject.

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