EVA 2014, Limerick, Ireland
Curated by Bassam Al Baroni
Slide-Installation, 160 slides, 2 synchronized Ektapro projectors.
45 papier-mache tiles each 12X12 inches, acrylic and gouache.
paint, protective UV matt varnish.
4 wall drawings each 96 X 72', black chalkboard paint, pencil and fixative.
The project was funded by Outset Netherlands.
The artist first visited the city of Srinagar in Kashmir during the Christmas of 2010, in the aftermath of what had been a particularly violent summer.
Between May and September 2010 more than a hundred people lost their lives in the Srinagar valley and innumerable others were injured by stone pelting and aggressive policing.
Soi will be imbedding himself within the studio of a craftsman that he had met over his first visit to Srinagar. He will explore and expand upon their motifs, using as canvas papier-mache tiles made specifically for this purpose.
The technology of papier-mache enters Kashmir with the arrival of Sufism from Iran. The Sufi saint Bul Bul Shah is attributed to having converted the Buddhist ruler, Rinchen Shah, to Islam in the 1300's and laid the foundation of a secular Sufi culture in Kashmir.
The slide- show explores the working of ancient patterns within the Sufi architecture of the city. An essay evolves that intuitively links the acts of fragmentation and alienation that allow for the formation of motifs with the drawing of political borders.
On the surrounding wall within the industrial Golden Vale milk plant Soi had inscribed texts and diagrams related to the work done and time spent in Kashmir. These consist of a diagram from Da Vinci's folio 38, dated to 1492 on the distortion of imagery, an excerpt from the Instrument of Accession signed on the 26th October 1947 and lastly, a pattern from the diary of a Khatumbandhi artisan.