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Beej [Seed (in Urdu)], 2017
Intervention at roundabout in Al Naba’ah area of Sharjah
Unregistered seeds, soil, water and supplies
A collaboration with gardeners from Pakistan living in Sharjah
Commissioned by Sharjah Art Foundation
Supported by Sharjah Municipality and Maraya Art Centre
* 1977 Beirut, Lebanon. Lives in Dubai, UAE
Vikram Divecha’s work develops around ‘found processes’—those existing forces at work within state, social, economic and industrial spheres that go largely overlooked. The artist introduces ‘glitches’ into these processes that disrupt or realign the normal system operation, resulting in altered and amplified outcomes. His work often emerges out of study of the existing surroundings as well as through ongoing dialogue with communities and participants. His resulting work in a range of forms consolidates orchestration behind the scenes and the cumulative process of getting to know a place.
Beej [Seed (in Urdu)] (2017) activates a potential for farming in the municipal workforce, largely from Pakistan, who tend to Sharjah’s landscaping. Two gardeners travelled home to bring vegetable and grain seeds from their family farms in Lahore and Punjab back to Sharjah. Along with others in the community of municipal gardeners, they will sow seeds of their choosing in a roundabout in the Al Naba’ah residential neighbourhood. The roundabout, a site of convening and dispersal, will host the cycles of sowing and harvesting. Spanning a few growing seasons, Beej explores the position of the gardeners in relation to the land that they cultivate, both in Pakistan and the UAE. The unregistered seeds highlight the movement, presence and status of those who tend them. The eventual consumption of produce and dispersal of the seeds extend the exploration of presence and sustenance throughout the city.
Participating gardeners include Sajad Hussain Bughio, Muhammad Saleem Manzoor Ahmed and Muhammad Shabbir Ahmad Din. This project is supported by Sharjah Municipality and Maraya Art Centre.
(From the SB13 Guidebook)
Vikram Divecha: Beej
Interview about his long-term intervention at a roundabout in Sharjah in collaboration with gardeners from Pakistan. By Pat Binder & Gerhard Haupt, Nafas Art Magazine, 2017
All the editions since 2003. Special Features by UiU - informative visual tours, incl. lots of photos and some videos.
The Afterlives of the Postcolonial. Online and in-person, 5 - 7 March 2022. Part of the SAF 2022 spring program are several exhibitions.