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india art fair 2019
F05 & P07
‘Fire Script/Landscape’ by Shanthamani Muddaiah

Shanthamani Muddaiah
Fire Script, 2018
Wood, Charcoal on Ply board
72 x 72 x 4 in

Land of Fire script:

The more the city dwellings rise vertically the more one needs to go deep into the earth for natural resources to fuel one’s activities. The upward growth, naturally, has a strong downward connection: from the mining labourers’ lives, their health conditions, the economy, deforestation, displacement of villages, groundwater pollution, corrupt governments to the world politics of natural resources. When we see the skylines of the urban space we do not see it in the totality of its relation to our own environment as well as its consequences that make a very negative impact elsewhere.

A material like firewood, used commonly for getting warmth or preparing food, takes a conical shape while it burns. Splitting the burnt wood logs in the middle and arranging them one on the other gives a mirror image. Thus, it allows another way of reading the material.

The material (carbon) wood charcoal is a signifier and the act of fire scripts the material with its act of burning.


Shanthamani Muddaiah was born in Mysore, Karnataka in 1967. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from Chamarajendra Academy of Visual Arts, Mysore and Master of Fine Arts in Painting from M S University, Baroda. In 2004, she studied Paper-Making under the Fellowship of the Charles Wallace Scholarship in Glasgow, Scotland..

Shanthamani has exhibited widely in India and around the world. Her recent shows include “Bamboo for Paris” at École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs, Paris in 2018, “B. Reigns” with Marc Thebault at Gallery Sumukha, Bangalore in 2017, “Neither Tree nor Ash” at Suzanne Tarasieve Gallery, Paris in 2016 among many others. She has received many awards and fellowships including National Junior Fellowship from Ministry of Tourism and Culture, New Delhi for 2012-14 and 2006-08, India Sri-Lanka Foundation assistance for artistic collaboration “The Present: Colombo-Bangalore” 2014 and the Charles Wallace Scholarship to work in Glasgow, UK 2004 as well as Inlaks Take of Grant, 1992. Shanthamani’s works are in the collection of C-Collection Switzerland, Collection Helene Lamarque Miami, and Phillips de Pury Collection, New York. Her works are in private collections in India and abroad.

She lives and works in Bangalore, India.


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