MUMBAIMUTAI | MUHANNED CADER
01.10

Along with fragments, Cader deploys stencil cut-outs and collage to create his drawings and paintings. Preferring the landscape over the figure, his scenic vistas are notable for being non-rectangular. The landscape appears instead within a cloud or a bubble like form. The effect is reminiscent of the way the world might be naturally framed as a reflected image through a puddle of water or across the surface of a tank or reservoir. Through the course of a day these naturally occurring mirrors reflect the imperceptible changes in the landscape over time. By contrast an image, whether in the form of a drawing or a painting, is necessarily limited to a singular view. One that is fixed and stationary. The conceptual reckonings of such a predicament are what interest Cader. ''This is why I remove the rectangle frame that surrounds the landscape in my drawings. It is similar to asking what surrounds our understanding or do we only ever know part of the truth? This for me is true politics, where one never sees the real or whole picture''. Though we quest to grasp life in its totality, Cader's work underlines that we are by the same token limited to seeing it in fragments, through certain angles, perspectives and narratives. A series of cut-out forms containing delicately rendered light-filled spaces, wittingly titled Casting Light (2009), ponders such a proposition yet further. To what extent can an artwork voice opinion? Is an image ultimately better equipped to cast doubt rather than light on subject? While Cader's work is not obviously political he is a political artist with a capital 'A' to pose such questions.

Excerpt from introduction to Mumbai Mutai by Sharmini Pereira


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