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Shadows:One Yet Separate: Mithu Sen’s Poetic Exhibition at The Museum Lapidarium, Novigrad

Novigrad, Croatia – The Museum Lapidarium in Novigrad is currently showcasing an intriguing exhibition by Mithu Sen titled Shadows: One Yet Separate (Sjene. Jedno ali odvojeno), curated by Jerica Ziheri. The exhibition draws inspiration from the prose poem “Sjena (Shadow)” by the renowned Croatian poet A. G. Matoš, delving into the themes of lingual politics and the concept of post-language poetry within an imagined time and society.

The exhibition features a variety of new drawings, videos, and light installations. A central theme is the deconstruction and overwriting of Matoš’s handwritten Croatian scripts, transforming them into asemic scripts. These scripts, devoid of specific semantic content or recognizable language structure, present visually engaging glyphs and marks that resemble writing but do not conform to linguistic rules. The result is a series of unauthored, incomprehensible new drawings.

Through this linguistic re-imagination, the exhibition explores subconscious assumptions about an unfamiliar, ‘unknown’ culture and language. The illegible linguistic constructs are designed to induce a sense of dyslexia and a refusal to access meaning, thereby capturing the angst associated with location, belonging, and solidarity.

A notable highlight of the exhibition is the guided light-line installation that traverses the museum site. This installation interprets an interplay of imaginary words and image associations between visible surfaces and their shadows, creating an architectonic and poetic form of experimental illuminated visual poetry. It guides viewers through the space, providing both luminosity and aesthetic accompaniment.

Shadows: One Yet Separate frames language, identity, cultural loss, and global politics as incomprehensible poetry, blending internal states of instinct, feeling, sensation, and poetic abstractions. By reproducing an imaginary script through the deconstruction and overwriting of Matoš’s handwritten poems, artist Mithu Sen facilitates a ‘cross-cultural exchange’ that alludes to the limits of human communication.

This innovative exhibition invites viewers to engage with the art on a deeper level, challenging their perceptions of language and communication in a global context. The show is a testament to the power of visual art in expressing complex themes and emotions.

Shadows: One Yet Separate is open to the public at The Museum Lapidarium in Novigrad, Croatia. For more information, visit the museum’s website.

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