PARTICIPANT / Rajorshi Ghosh

  • Name Rajorshi Ghosh

Rajorshi Ghosh

Seven Art Limited
Greater Kailash
March 30–May 12, 2012


Upon entry, there is an overwhelming sense of space: Rajorshi Ghosh’s four architectural installations in this show are spare, inviting viewers to project their imaginations, at high tide, onto the rigid mathematics of a room. “Rooms by the Sea” reconstructs the essential workings of the psyche through a seascape. The source of this idea is in a wall text that quotes Salman Rushdie’s 1991 speech at Columbia University, in the wake of the fatwa issued against him: “I’ve lived in that messy ocean all my life. I’ve fished in it for my art. This turbulent sea . . . is the sea by which I was born and which I carry with me wherever I go.” His voice ripples across the seemingly humid room.

The most curious work on view is site-specific to a corner: Rooms by the Sea #1, 2007–12. The longitudinal video projection appears as a door left very slightly ajar, allowing one to gaze on a slice of virtual horizon. Its deliberate, closed composition reflects the false boundaries of nations, while the water, boundless and undividable, becomes symbolic for Rushdie’s (and the artist’s) freedom to create. Ghosh’s ocean, though universal, has been filmed not in his own country—India—but from a pier in Santa Monica, where he currently lives. The work metaphorically evokes the furthest point of the Western world and the beginning of the East. The same line that blurs also creates points of exile and access.

On a smaller scale, another section of the show shores up a similarly fragmented, existential experience. The photographic series “Studies in Framing (Rooms by the Sea),” 2012, imposes black, geometric abstractions of muntins and mullions on a seascape, leaving them saturated with a simultaneous sense of escape and imprisonment, infinity and mortality. Thus Ghosh elevates architecture to art: His structures are only habitable in the mind, and his images transcend the rational. The viewer’s imagination is realigned and renovated, so that upon exit, one turns the corner with an altered perspective.