installation of approximately 700 found objects (iron and brass) and found object embedded in gesso cubePrabhavathi Meppayil’s practice rests in her approach to processes and materials. Coming from a family of goldsmiths, Meppayil adopts artisan techniques and materials and relocates them to forms and ideas associated with postwar art.
In tw/one, found iron and brass tools traditionally used by goldsmiths are assembled into a low-relief grid, creating what Benjamin H. D. Buchloh describes as a collision of ‘ordering principles and disordering strategies.’ The virtually obsolete tools are liberated from their intended use when placed in the grid – the anti-narrative leitmotif of Modernism – yet retain traces of their histories, particularly the musicality inherent to the goldsmith’s tinkering process.
tw/one resists classification and instead evokes tendencies of different artistic disciplines. This is especially apparent in the gesso cube that, like Meppayil’s gesso panels, consists of a metal object inlaid into a monochrome surface, occupying a neutral space between painting and sculpture, picture and object. Through this dialogue between categories and forms, Meppayil creates ambiguities and contradictions that generate new readings of her work and materials.