Mass-Q-Line generic image © A432 Productions/Image credit: Harsh Doshi

The project is planned to be executed by visual artist Sumantra Mukherjee along with Goethe-Institut / Max Mueller Bhavan Kolkata based on discussions about ‘Masculinity’ - and its interpretations in Bengal through questioning some stereotypical surface identities that it denotes today. Popular films and commercials, along with their propaganda in the public domain keep the myth alive as what a male should be, and how 'HE' should behave in a given circumstances. 

  • 1 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 2 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 3 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 4 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 5 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 6 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 7 © Sumantra Mukherjee

  • 8 © Sumantra Mukherjee

The common male confirms and tries to survive up to! He pretends. But he is also a vulnerable fragile character with normal abilities, he cooks and cares, which acts to break the myth. Sumantra will develop such a character imagery and introduce it in the public spaces, through periodic posters pasted on the available walls in the city. The male character will represent the average normal male, in contrast to the posers in the film posters or otherwise.

The designed posters/graphics with the same character - will appear in several spaces regularly in an interval of 2 weeks- for a period of eight months. This way it will help people to get familiar with the character as gradually the character opening up to portray the usual male who isn’t a perfect fit to the term 'Masculine' but is also a human being having many facets.

The character in the posters through interesting graphics will bring forth a line of questions for the audience to think and respond. Documenting the responses of people, could be a passersby who regularly passed the space, which will have the changing posters, or an onlooker through on spot spontaneous interviews on their reaction or response.

The posters will also have a QR code and a Hashtag, which will enable interested people to arrive a larger audience on a specially designed website which will include recordings of all the other responses and will have the possible technology to start a discussion among people on the same platform. The whole process will create a content which will then act as resources to further develop an artist collaboration of creating a mural at a visible space in the city.

Artist Sumantra Mukherjee

Sumantra Mukherjee is an independent freelance artist, who divides his time painting in his studio and sharing his artistic creations and expressions in community and public spaces engaging people. He also does illustrations and graphic novels for children, posters, murals and sculpture using mixed media for initiating dialogues between the arts and common people through their responses and expressions.

He chooses his subjects through emphatic involvement and understanding of the difficulties and changes locally around him, allowing the local public, not necessarily interested in artistic practice, to be involved with imageries that Sumantra creates. Thus enabling the viewers to express their own perspectives and ideas about a variety of issues relevant to their lives.

His first solo presentation ‘Cloud 9’ was installed in 2009 in Kolkata followed by other art projects, namely 'Chiriya Chug Gayi Cake’ (When the Bird Nibbles the Cake) displayed in the Society of Contemporary Artist Space, Kolkata, ‘Chalo Painting Tangai', a community art project in an abandoned port area in Kolkata. His solo international projects include, 'NORMAL', at Het Wilde Weten, Rotterdam which  was an outcome of a three month long residency in Netherland.