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RUCHI BAKSHI SHARMA ART / MOTION / PLAY

Ruchi Bakshi Sharma studied Communication Design at the National Institute of Design and has directed several award winning live action and stopmotion shorts. She works with multiple mediums - Lenticulars, paper assemblages inside shadow boxes, video, optical and animating toys, kaleidoscopes out of recycled materials, jointed paper puppets for beginning story tellers, illustrated puzzles and handmade zines in collaboration with young kids. Play and motion are dominant elements in her work.

SHADOW BOX

A shadow box is like a personal shrine, a three dimensional collage displaying treasured and meaningful images in an artistic assemblage. I make them to create rabbit holes inside everyday reality. According to the legend of the sea, it was considered bad luck for a sailor's shadow to touch land before his body does. Other sailors would create a shadowbox for the departing sailor, which would contain the sailor's "shadow" until he was safely ashore. Since I am drawn to exploring personal history through dreamlike imagery, this form became a way of of memory keeping that allowed me to escape inside these story worlds. The central characters in these boxes play mediators between human and the spirit, quietly witnessing the push and pull of their of lives with an instinctual wisdom, the stories they tell are often allegorical in nature.

Forest of Mushrooms

The Girl of Equanimity is addressed as the golden one, the truthful one, the even minded one who stands for ceaseless potential. She inspires courage in a person and is always ready to confront thought patterns that cause disconnection with the self, the moon behind her a reminder and symbol of becoming whole.

The Girl of Serenity is a beautiful benevolent female principle that is essential to the generation and balance of life. A great source of yielding and well-being, she rouses all life and sets things into motion while driving away darkness each day. Her conscious self plumbs the depths of the ocean bottom and ascends with the light revealing hidden treasures.
The Girl of Serenity
The Girl of Abundance flies through the heavens on beams of light, illuminating the world by bringing good fortune on all those who gaze upon her. She symbolizes energy, is a marker of plenty and sees everything as it is, shining in majesty. The glow and radiance of her body is as luminous as that of the Sun.

The Girl of Balance is a modern day alchemist who is surrounded by creation water, nurturing calm amidst cyclical churning. her mind is centered, as she works with the polarity of the sun & the moon and the push and pull of the planets to reach a place of perfection.

The Girl of Unbroken song

The Girl of Unbroken Song is a modern day naturalist who plays with the resonance of growth cycles. Birds are her companions. She creates temendous energy through singing. Soaring above the world, with the wind in her face she harnesses vibrational energy to provide all things with life and flow.

God Boxes

Dance of Three Headed Shiva- the Auspicious One, Meditating Hanuman - the Divine Monkey Companion, Karma Restorer Vishnu - The God of Protection

LENTICULARS

These unique edition prints are created using the Lenticular technology that utilizes a combination of specially prepared artwork and lenticular lens to simulate images that give a stereoscopic illusion of movement and depth. The result is a spectacular three-dimensional image that creates a compelling and playful level of ambiguity. This form of printmaking allows for a new and expanded way of looking giving the viewer a sense of observing a powerfully different dimension.

The Forest of Gods is the illusory mirror where many reflecting selves reside exploring the divide between the observer and the observed. As the enquirers encounter dual qualities springing up from the screen of time, the forest becomes a potent space for removal of all conflict.

Forest Of Gods, Limited Edition Lenticular prints

The Forest of Mushrooms is an unexplored realm where the girl sits. Its a place of testing that she must penetrate to find answers. Mysteries float by. Occurings and mushrooms tower over her wanting to excite and overwhelm. As she focuses her mind, time gets suspended and a deep quiet descends upon the forest.

Forest Of Mushrooms, Limited Edition Prints

TOYS

These handmade optical toys, puzzles and gravity defying paper puppets with movable joints help children invent stories and create imaginary worlds. Let the characters invite you into the whimsical realms and delight you with their movement, color, handmade beauty and wit. These processes encourage children to think freely and do creative handwork that is closely linked to parts of the brain that process emotion and memory

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Jointed Puppets Sunflower Clown and Elpentine Bella
Jointed Puppets Mr Woodwind and Miss Trumpet-ear
Steampunk Robos Hypno Lolly and Mighty Boop
Optical Wonderturns

Framed Art Puzzles

These 54 piece framed art puzzles are portraits of imaginary characters meant to delight and invite children into their whimsical realms. Framed in a teakwood tray, these puzzles can be hung on a wall after the puzzle has been assembled.

54 Piece Framed Art Puzzle 'Blue Cat Shows the Way'
54 Piece Framed Art Puzzle 'Boy from the football planet'

Drawings and film are Ruchi's primary artistic tools. Her shorts have been screened at the Kyoto international film festival in Japan, Digital Talkies & Osians in New Delhi, Dhaka international film festival, LA International Childrens film festival and St Johns international film festival in Canada. Her broadcast Idents have won multiple Design Awards at Singapore and New York. She has taught Design Fundamentals and Expressionistic film language courses at Xaviers Institute of Communication, Parsons ISDI Mumbai and Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology. She has taken numerous Storytelling workshops - optical toys with slum children at Manorama Paathshala, Shadow box & Movable Puppet Making at the Bhau Daji Lad Museum and Zine workshops at IIT Mumbai.

In august 2017 she attended a month long residency program at WAA/'What About Art' in Mumbai where she explored the notions of Home, Humanity and the 'Human Condition'. This work was displayed at WAA's annual Open Studio as a part of Mumbai Gallery Weekend's collateral program. In September 2017 she showed her autobiographical video stories inside a personified wooden Cabinetman for a group show titled 'ODDS & ENDS' at Bangalore's GALLERYSKE. She was invited by Amnesty International to create an installation to raise awareness for their 'Undertrial Project'. This was shown at JAAGA's Bangalore Fantastic in December 2017. In October she was invited by Vienna based Galerie Krinzinger to their Artist-In-Residence program held at the One World Foundation in Srilanka where she developed an installation called 'The Scry box' . This was shown at Krinzinger Projekte's AIR show in february 2018.

Fair Un Fair

Foundation for India Contemporary Arts, India Art Fair, 2018

Fair–un-Fair is a coming together of three artists catalysed by Sudarshan Shetty who invited artists Aradhana Seth and Ruchi Bakshi to participate in the project. It is an imposition of a fair within a fair. It is a space which invites a casual interaction, perhaps reminiscent of a village fair, with three different spaces within the booth. One can have ones picture taken against a constructed backdrop, or create their own stories on a magnetic interactive piece or partake in a ring-toss game to win a prize object.

‘Do or Die’ features 40 esoteric stories centering on the age old karmic algorithm of virtue and vice. Inspired from the practice of fate telling the video sculpture allows the viewer to reflect on one’s journey through many realms of an unfolding cosmos. It also features an interaction piece that encourages the viewer to engage in deductive reasoning as they use magnetic drawings and thought bubbles to tell their own stories.

Fate Box , Foundation for India Contemporary Arts, India Art Fair, 2018
Do Or Die - Algorithmic Box , Foundation for India Contemporary Arts, India Art Fair, 2018
Magnetic stories , FICA Booth, India Art fair, 2019

Odds and Ends - Cabinet Man Aquarium Head

Witness absorbtions video stories

This show was based on working with tangible objects of surrounding realities and how their materiality lies in their inherent ability to witness. My work-table desk-drawer has experienced a wide array of my moods and energy, an entire spectrum which ranged from elated bursts of inspiration to elusive rants of frustration. It has absorbed memories I myself might have forgotten, and its textures are energized and animated by all that it has witnessed. A lot of my investigations have revolved around that momentary switch between stillness and movement, and the manner in which it can be captured. I was interested in investigating this through a series of autobiographical video stories. My relationship with the desk could then be rendered through a medium that so magically conveys and amplifies the multiplicity of the real. This led to my cabinet man, which draws on a certain discourse of the curiosity cabinet as a personal exhibition space. This Cabinet is a philosophical microcosm of my mind. For me, it is the personification of a virtual dream world, a kind of memory theatre inviting the viewer to participate in an exploratory experience.

Cabinet Man, Odds and Ends, Gallery SKE, Bangalore 2018

The Scry Box

Optical device to facilitate 'looking in'

I have always been interested in "that which is not seen by the eye". Intrigued by ancient eastern practices, and diverse forms of thought, I seek to explore the sensorial - delving into the cosmic quest that merges the elements of earth, water, fire, air and ether, and the cyclical process of their creation and dissipation. Through personal experiences, and by observing such practices, I feel increasingly aware of the body as a microcosm of the great universe. I was inspired to use the form of the hand wherein the part reflects the whole. Not only is it a form that symbolizes expression but also a tool through which one manifests what one sees with one’s mind. Further, a healing practice that attracted me during my residency in Srilanka was the use of masks to draw out diseases within the individual's body or mind. The sanni yakuma ritual is built around a projective technique which reenacts the interaction between the body and the disease. When the disease becomes embodied, personified as someone that can be seen and communicated with, a process starts to unfold, a knot begins to dissolve. This led me to investigate the physical act of putting on masks, as has been done in story-telling and healing rituals from pre-historic times.I wanted to manifest these meanderings through a figure I return to consistently - an optical box. As an apparatus, it conjures a spatial experience of the emblematic hand seen through a viewfinder lens, offering the looker an opportunity to "Scry" - the act of seeing into a device in the hope of detecting a special message. A simultaneous window, opens yet another coded world to the viewer. On the carved plane of the box, an animated video can be seen through two magnified lenses. Drawn sequentially, images are perceived as movement, based on the principles of after image, depicting disease and its accompanying chaos. This moving image work is accompanied by spoken recitation and sounds that dramatize what is happening inside the Scry Box. To document and visually translate interplanetary rhythms that lend a sense of theatricality to folklore, I was drawn to use totems and mystical diagrams. The idea was to create symbols of communication that would bring about integration of the facets of one's personality that are not well integrated, or perhaps not accepted within. The experience of scrying into this box is meant to provoke a mirror like inner dialogue to take place.

Single channel video, carved wood, ceramic deity eyes, viewfinder lens, magnifying lens, LCD screen and mirrors.

The Scry Box, Krinzinger Projekte, Vienna, Austria 2017
Muzzle man, Amnesty International, Bangalore fantastic - TECH+ART festival, 2017

Winds of Change - Interactive Spinning Object

In 2019 Ruchi was invited by Serendipity Art Festival to create a Interactive installation at the art park in Panjim, Goa. Curated by Music Director Sneha Khanwalkar she collaborated with Filmmaker Sanjeev Sharma to make a voice activated whirling device accumulating a collective Intention over time.

Brahmalok

AIRDROME

Art, Education & Design Collective

Airdrome is an artist-run platform that materialized out of a collective dream - to rejoice in the spirit of art and to explore its direct relevance to our lives and our communities. Airdrome has an exciting history of celebrating art’s pervasive, participatory nature by creating a coherent environment. We are forging something new and dynamic to further the rapidly changing independent art sector in Mumbai and India. Our intent is to encourage togetherness and collaboration, nurture new partnerships and build significant social capital through these shared artistic experiences.

AIRdrome’s mission is to be a catalyst for a broader dialogue between artists and the public and to make more room in the city for artists’ work. We are set to explore connections between contemporary art practices and broader cultural and social issues. Our shows will place emphasis on promoting painting, sculpture, film, video, photography, talks, workshops, performance works, self published journals and zines by emerging as well as known artists. Our events will take place in spaces that maybe off the beaten track, hidden from view and sometimes temporary but worth seeking out as they will often show art and artists that you wont see anywhere else.

“The audience is looking for accessible art, artists are keen to think beyond the existing hierarchy of the art world. Somebody has to connect them! “
Featured at this event were Canada based Prashant Miranda’s whimsical watercolours and Children’s books, Shirley Bhatnagar’s stunningly expressive ceramics, Swiss artists Husmann/Tschaeni’s fluorescent acrylics on glass, Vivek Chokalingam’s site-specific interactive installation, augmented reality video wall by Asavari Kumar, Camera Obscura video work by Meghana Bisineer, Anjora Noronha and Renuka Rajiv’s drawings, milliner Isha Ahluwalia’s Hats, Sheeba Chaddha’s theater performance created out of a story by Haruki Murakami and Photo prints by Uzma Mohsin, Kalpana Subramanian and Aishwarya Arumbakkam. The Feature presentations : exclusive film screenings of Kamal Swaroops’ Rangbhoomi', Prashant Bhargava’s 'Patang'; documentary 'Handmade in India' by Malati Rao, short films include Natasha Mendonca’s Jan Villa and Sonali Gulati’s latest work.
“Our intent is to bring art and its exploration within reach to a curious audience. We want art to be integrated into everyday life. We invite you to participate in these unique workshops being conducted by artists and celebrated educators, watch award winning film screenings and reflect on the eclectic work that is on display.
“The audience is looking for accessible art, artists are keen to think beyond the existing hierarchy of the art world. Somebody has to connect them! “

WORKSHOPS

Workshops conducted by AIRDROME for kids and adults

PERFORMANCES

Created By
ruchi bakshi
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