10 Sep 2014

Art News: Art for Social Change

Bangalore based artist P. Mahesh Kumar is participating in ArtPrize, an international art competition in Grand Rapids, Michigan to be held between Sep 24 - Oct 12, 2014. His painting titled A Girl's Freedom will be exhibited at Fountain Street Church - one of the top 5 venues to host the ArtPrize event under the theme "Art to Change the World: Inspiring Social Justice”. Artworks ‘will be judged by their ability to communicate human rights issues and on the quality of artistic expression’.
A Girl's Freedom by P. Mahesh Kumar for ArtPrize, Art Scene India, Image courtesy artist
ArtPrize is described as an ‘unorthodox, highly disruptive, and undeniably intriguing to the art world and the public alike’. According to the ArtPrize website, ‘For 19 days, three square miles of downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan, become an open playing field where anyone can find a voice in the conversation about what is art and why it matters. Art from around the world pops up in every inch of downtown, and it’s all free and open to the public’.

The event is not curated and is open to all artists of any background from anywhere in the world. Involving huge prize money and multiple prizes, the method of choosing the prize winner has been compared to the popular reality show American Idol.

Mahesh Kumar’s painting focuses on gender related issues and deals with social evils such as female infanticide, domestic violence and crimes against women. The artwork is an attempt to portray hopes and aspirations of millions of Indian women and to draw attention to multiple challenges faced by them in their daily life. The painting raises a highly relevant issue and we hope the effort finds appreciation with the audience at the ArtPrize exhibition.

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