Emblem of Fear

Mahula Ghosh



Anant Art Gallery, 2008 (March)

Catalogue Essay: Meera Menezes

36 pages


To bring a kind of closure to these violent acts Mahula places transparent, fibreglass coffins within the gallery space as if offering places of repose. These final resting spaces however bear no bodies or bloodied remains. Instead the artists subverts them to enshrine objects- a bowl or cup symbolic of Islamic art and a pedestal that would normally serve to hold the Qurn or a holy book. By doing so she seeks to question our cliches and the media portrayal of Islamic terrorism and points us gently instead to Islam’s tremedous contribution in developing a syncrestic culture. She turns the viewer's gaze to the uplifting aspects od Islamic design and art forcing us to ponder on its contribution to literature, poetry, painting and architecture. Her line of questioning cautions us about the simplistic Weltanschauung portrayed by the media at large and the generalization it endangers.


(excerpt from the catalogue essay titled ‘Emblem of Fear’ by Meera Menezes)