In Search of Home


It might be in a more varied manner, but Zineb Sedira too picks on language as a barometer of identity in her video triptych work Mother Tongue. Born in France to Algerian parents, Sedira now lives in England. The video includes documentary-style conversations between three generations of women, each of whom speak in their "mother tongue". In the first, Sedira and her mother talk in French and Arabic; in the second, she speaks to her daughter; but in the third, her daughter and mother can't converse. "Mother tongue isn't the language our mother speaks," says Gupta.

Mona Hatoum also falls back on her experiences. Born in Beirut to a Palestinian family, which fled to Lebanon after the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, in the Measures of Distance, the Turner Prize nominee reads letters from her mother where she blames the war for taking her daughters away to different corners of the world.

There are other stories of displacement. Tim Hetherington travels to Sierra Leone, Africa, in 2004 to document how the natives returning home are bringing in Western influences, and Angus Boulton's series "The Homeless" captures the homeless in London between 1995 and 2000, after changes in the social security system. Gupta adds that the aim of the exhibition is not to provide answers but raise questions.

The exhibition at IGNCA, Mansingh Road, is on till February 14. Contact: 23388447.

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