In 2018, the Goethe-Institute / Max Mueller Bhavan, Mumbai, initiated a collaboration titled State of Nature with interdisciplinary practitioner Ravi Agarwal. Addressing the ongoing ecological crisis and climate change—a topic that Agarwal works closely with—the project started with a lecture series in 2019. The current iteration of the project takes the form of the exhibition New Natures: A Terrible Beauty is Born. Curated by Agarwal, it brings together the work of seventeen artists, with Ranjit Hoskote as the Curator of Literature. The works in the show range from video and sculptural installations to photography and paintings, with each activating well-researched dialogues around ecological issues, layered with the socio-political trajectories of caste, class, gender and other marginal identities.
In this episode of In Person, Ravi Agarwal walks us through the various aspects of ecology that the exhibition explores. He talks about how the artists and the works in the show create new dialogues that enable an understanding of humans and their relationships with nature, while also disseminating knowledge and new research rooted in an ethics of practice.