Paris-based Malala addresses colonialism

Cultural Correspondent | Published: 22:51, Feb 10,2018 | Updated: 00:33, Feb 11,2018


Visitors look at Malala Andrialavidrazana’s seven pigment prints, which were on display at National Art Gallery. — Snigdha Zaman

Paris-based artist Malala Andrialavidrazana depicts the impact of European colonisation in her seven pigment prints at the fourth edition of Dhaka Art Summit, which ended on Saturday at National Art Gallery of Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy.
Malala uses regional and world maps, human and animal figures, engraved banknotes to depict how colonialism affects the world.
The prints were displayed under a curatorial section titled ‘A Beast, A God, and A Line’, curated by Cosmin Costinas. The section featured works by 51 artists from different countries.
In the prints, Malala, who was born in Madagascar, creates complex collages of 19th century European maps and shows the impact of European colonisation. The print series titled ‘Figures’ contains maps of the world from 1816 to 1899.
‘These compositions reflect the myths and illusions, the upheavals, clashes and transformations of the world in the age of colonialism and its aftermath’, writes the curator on the prints.
The invasions of wealthy far-away lands and regions by colonial powers have been shown in the prints. Most of the Asian and African regions and countries came under the yoke of colonialism in the nineteenth century.
The destruction of traditions, cultures and life-styles of native people have also been depicted in the prints.
One of the prints show gun-toting soldiers subjugating natives in Africa, while another print show armies marching across the map to reach engraved banknotes.
The artist has also depicted the impact of colonisation on nature in one of her prints showing colonists exploiting natural resources like forests to acquire wealth.
Dhaka Art Summit was organised by Samdani Art Foundation in association with Bangladesh Shilpakala Academy.

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