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March 2010 Issue 1

Black must be one of the most loaded words in the English language, as indeed it is in many other languages; the problem of having so many meanings as points of association makes this very simple word common in its usage yet with an intriguing ability to variation. With its inherent values, it allows the speaker or writer the possibility to comment on a specific context and usually provides access to a substantial amount of prejudice and non-ethical perspectives. Unlike any other word in any language, no other word can cause so much harm or uncertainty to an individual or a group. It thus merits visual comprehension from artists and art commentators’ observations as to how this one term can echo societies’ recurring images.

In celebration of this term, this concept and this enigmatic signifier, TAKE is proud to have worked with contemporary artists and writers to evaluate its place in their thinking and making for the inaugural issue.

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TAKE Black: Editor’s Note

Simply Black

Gauri Gill: The Americans

Parenthetical Remarks on Five Photographs by Lisl Ponger

Chittrovanu Mazumdar: Night Skin

Nocturnes on Dayanita Singh: Blue Book [# 18-23]

Iona Rozeal Brown

Shilpa Gupta: Stained by the Abandoned Voices of History

Monsters of the Future: On The Otolith Group’s Preparations 1-5 (2006)

Sanna Sevika Hansson: Explorer of the Dark

Superior Firepower, for now: Seher Shah’s Black-light Landscapes

From Narrative to Painting: The Use of Black in Lars Teichmann’s Work

Nazneen Ayyub-Wood: BurKars

The Black Humor of O Zhang’s Little Red Book

Torsten Warmuth: The Great Flaneur

Farida Batool: The Lady Vanishes

Gregg Lefevre: Defacing Corporate Cool

Luis Salaberria

Things Are Not That Way: Obscurity and Reason in Tatiana Blass

The Black Spot: Leila Pazooki’s Aesthetics of Censorship

Jompet Kuswidananto

Laughter in the Dark: Interpreting Dhruvi Acharya’s Art in Relation to Black

Andrei Molodkin: Raising Our Banner

Radhika Khimji: Black Collage, Collage as Black

Pakistani Art in New York

Naeem Mohaiemen’s show, ‘I Am Going to Live True Life Or Die Trying’

Recent works of Shilpa Gupta at Yvon Lambert Gallery Paris

Looking Back at the ‘Multi-Fragmented’

‘A Mythical Universe’: A Mid-career Retrospective of Jayasri Burman

Careless Interplay of Thread and Words

Manisha Parekh’s ‘Spinning Secrets’

‘Lo Real Maravilloso-Marvelous Reality’

Baptist Coelho’s ‘I think of my brother’s only one child named Deepthi’

Architecture as a Façade – Reviewing Pooja Iranna’s show at The Guild, 2009

1st Gwangju Biennale: International Curator Course

Culcutta Jottings

Where have all the collectors gone?

I Shot the Sheriff: Art in the Time of Blog-Era

The Phantom Lady Strikes Again: Heroes

Lowbrow Art: Intimations of a Pan Global Underground

Digestive Art-Munchies in and Across the City

Swayam Siddha: The Self Realized

Tatiana Blass, Cão cego 1 or Blind dog 1 (Detail), Cast brass and paraffin wax, 17 x 200 x 250 cm, 2009. Image Courtesy: Andrew Kemp



Gauri Gill: The Americans

The Americans is a series of photographs of the Indian community in North America that Gauri Gill began in 2000 and completed in 2007, five years after her graduate years at Stanford University. The work that began as a portrait of her family in 1993-94 later grew into an investigation into a community that was seldom represented in the museums and galleries of the continent.      

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Chittrovanu Mazumdar: Night Skin

Part journey, part memoir, at once hallucinatory and monumental, few works of art explore the immersive and transformative properties of blackness and night with more intensity and imagination than Chittrovanu Mazumdar’s Nightskin.

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Nocturnes on Dayanita Singh: Blue Book [# 18-23]

An icy, spectral light hovers above the sleeping roofs of factory sheds in Dayanita Singh’s Blue Book (2008/2009). It bestows, on the details it touches, a specificity that they lack as anonymous elements in the scaffolding of industrial modernity.

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Iona Rozeal Brown

To talk about the work of Iona Brown under the aegis of blackness presents one with the quandary that is the fact that her art is so black that to ponder it under the position of blackness is difficult, to say the least. It is so black that it at times, coincidental to her artistic endeavor and at other times, so prominent that it becomes the focal point of a work.

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