Jeevan Xavier, JLX, is an entrepreneur, designer and artist based in Bangalore, with two decades of experience in the textile industry, and seven years of artistic practice. He’s a self taught and multi disciplinary artist. His subject matter has evolved from affects of his personal encounters with social conflicts. He takes the conflicts back to the people as a piece of work to trigger conversations. Contradictions in behaviour and its dynamics in human interaction intrigue him and inspire his practice of Art and Design. To sum up his artistic practice is a way of connecting with society at large. People and Folklore are other areas of interest - These two passions, coupled with his two-decade long industrial experience are visible in his work.
JLX’s artistic self-expression was triggered by participating in notably two workshops during a summer in the UK - One on colour drawing and abstraction with the artist Tricia Gilman. Followed by Rod Judson’s creative problem-solving workshop (2005)
JLX is trained in Textile and Fashion Design and started his career in the Home Textile industry in 1999. He has since worked with two major textile companies in India in senior positions leading teams of designer, artists and technicians; creating home textile products for international brands.
Currently he manages a Textile - Design - Art - Research studio in Bangalore - JLX Studio. Under this eponymous brand, the studio engages in documentation and research in areas of folklore and vernacular culture in Southern India; alongside commercial design projects.
He is currently pursuing the Creative and Cultural Business Program at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, to back his entrepreneurial values.
During his residency at Zentralwerk, Dresden, he will be exploring artwork - focusing on how an individual’s ideological differences play out in daily life between partners, family members, friends, neighbours and colleagues.
First part of the work: The Others was a series of interventions with bright fuchsia colour fabric in the landscape of Dresden, known for its beautiful architecture and landscape. At certain locations, the fuchsia fabric was complemented by an orange fabric; draped alongside each other. JLX draped 12 meters of bright coloured fabrics on or around buildings, trees and monuments. The fuchsia fabric symbolising the people of India, and the marigold orange fabric symbolising India as a place. Dresden as a backdrop symbolised the fleeting nature of change. These temporary installations were symbolic and intended to create visual contrast in the cold winter landscape of Dresden, through colour.
The second part of this work was at Kabinett, Zentralwerk on 23rd January 2020. It was conceptualised on the idea to commune over food. The viewers were invited to have a simple meal of lentil and rice cooked by the artist. The artist had made five small scale sculptures in synthetic clay of different human faces for this. Part of the gallery was converted into a restaurant along with two installations of fabric and photographs of The Others. There were five dining tables, each table was neatly laid as in a cafe. On the table was a white tablecloth, placemats made of sewn leaves from Bangalore, a white plate, fuchsia cutlery and napkin, a sculpture and a mirror.
This was intended as an opportunity for the audience to actively participate by reflecting on their personal journey within the context of differences they have experienced and to be mindful of these ideas, established through photographs and the two sight specific installations in the space. The food for thought here was the differences that constitute you and me, the contradictions arising from these differences, the differences we repel, the differences we overlook, the differences we deal with or struggle with, the differences we embrace.