Salt of ocean, Salt as portion
Moon attached in the midst of ocean
Water in pan will turn into salt soon
They disappeared, saltpan into woods
Soon I will transform into concrete woods
Sir. Sun god is meeting Mr. Moon to discuss about mysterious dark matters.
Parag is a visual autoethnographer who archives what he perceives around him, his relationship with the scenery he inhabits. His visual art and socially engaged art practices are raising issues of loss and identity. He is archiving prevailing circumstances and intervening in the oral narratives regarding the colonial and Imperial history of the Fisherfolks of Mumbai.
Descended from a Son Koli (fisherfolk) tribe that are original inhabitants of the greater Mumbai, he lay in the image of a choking kiosk through the usage of changing daily life substances and rooted material culture from his indigenous tribe, who exist between the periphery of the ocean and land. It highlights changes that arise around his community and the estuarial seven islands. Fluctuations in the profession and day-to-day landscape that the Son Koli tribe has encountered over the last few centuries, as a result of Megalopolis’s unprecedented growth, the Process of his work reveals an endearing anecdote of evolution and survival.
His initiative of borrowing the public in art is to sort of use them and construct the civil aesthetic of the Son Koli tribe. It is the intangible impact he is interested in, wherein subsequently forges a dialogue and discourses which last longer than objects or images. For him, It is crucial to bring the community together to examine oral narratives, public art possesses possibilities to investigate evidence, after all, he is a gatherer of tangible shreds of evidence inside the fluxes.
He has grown up listening to all chronicles of the past which are the fable, an imaginative yarn, Parag senses, after years these fables are beginning to mount into myth, they are building into layers similar to residue structure in our mind. He wishes to portray and discern, for him, it is not only regarding the break up into a meticulous spot in his inventive practice but as well using a scope that gap the approach, he chooses to the icon and solidify timely reaction.
(Artist and Researcher)
Parag Tandel (b. 1978), is a Mumbai-based artist with a post-Diploma in Creative Sculpture from M. S University, Baroda (2005) and Diploma in sculpture and modelling from Sir J.J School of Art, Mumbai (2003). Tandel’s solo exhibitions include ‘Pregnant Room 1’ (2008) and ‘Pregnant Room 2’ (2010), both showcased at Pundole Art Gallery, Mumbai, ‘Chronicle’ (2016) at TARQ, Mumbai and ‘Autopolisphilia’ curated by Noopur Desai at Sudarshan art gallery, Pune, India (2018). He has also been part of various group shows across India including ‘Baroda March’ (2015), Mumbai; ‘Small is Big’ (2013); Durbar Hall, Kochi; ‘Earth Art Project Tansa’ (2013), Arka Art Trust, Mumbai; Upvan Art Festival (2013), Thane; ‘Small is Beautiful’ (2012) Tao Art Gallery, Mumbai; ‘The Art of Drawing’ (2011) The Guild, Mumbai; ‘TAKE 2’ (2011) Aarushi Arts, Delhi; ‘Untitled 2010’ (2010), Artkonsult, Delhi; and ‘AvaGard’ (2009), Threshold Art Gallery, Delhi among others.
Some of my public art projects include:
‘Confluence’- Mumbai Water Naratives curated by Sara Ahmed (2021); ‘Let There Be Bounty Everyday, Surving SQ: A Sunaparata Initiative’(2020); Tandel Fund of Archives, pop-up museum of fisherfolk, Mumbai (2020 & 2019); ‘(En)counters- Daily Rations’ Public art project, curated by Artoxygen (2017) Breathing art works, Mumbai; ‘Geographies of consumptions’, Mumbai (2015); ‘Big Catch’, Kala Ghoda Arts Festival, Mumbai (2012); and ‘Sandarbh’, Rajasthan (2011). Tandel has been a recipient of the Jhunjhunwala Scholarship Award (2003); Maharashtra State Art Award (2003); and All India Art and Craft Society State Award (2003).
Additionally, I have participated in residencies at the Bamboo Curtain Studio, Taiwan (2018) Piramal Art Residency (2017), Space 118 (2015), Mumbai and ‘Sandharbh’ site specific workshop in Partapur, Rajasthan.
I currently live and work in Thane, Mumbai.