The Dhaka University (DU) campus was once again transformed into a creative centre for the second day of the 1st Dhaka Live Art Biennale (DLAB), organised by Back ART. Day two of the first international performance based exhibition in Bangladesh featured artists from Brazil, Spain, Australia, Nepal, the Slovak Republic and of course, Bangladesh.
The first half of the exhibition took place at Curzon Hall, and kicked off with a unique performance by Brazilian artist Rodrigo Muniz. Many of the foreign artists who have traveled to Dhaka for the Biennale have been using their surroundings in their performance, and Muniz was no exception. He used natural elements like the earth and leaves to create a round shape, and interacted with the surroundings by projecting his voice through it.
Farah Nazmun from Bangladesh also used the space around here to express her artistic intent, walking around with her eyes covered and a necklace in her hands. According to the artist, “Curzon Hall is a space I have always loved, and I wanted to feel out the space. I used the necklace as a symbol for women; it is generally considered to a symbol of beauty, but it can also be a symbol of our oppression, covering something that is often unseen and ignored.”
The first half also featured performances Rahul Ananda from Bangladesh, Ritesh Maharjan from Nepal, and Abel Azcona from Spain.
The second half was organised at the DU swimming pool, and Tony Schwensen from Australia started it with a rather unusual performance – sitting in complete isolation in a separate room for three straight hours, with no interaction with the outside world whatsoever.
Tanzina Hossain Arshi from Bangladesh also staged a silent performance, but hers was filled with many words, literally. She stood dressed in black and pinned different letters of the Bengali alphabet to her outfit. According to the artist, “the colour black represented my protest against the oppression of the Pakistanis, and the words represent our victory.”
There were also performances from Rokko Juhasz from the Slovak Republic, Mahadi Masud from Bangladesh, as well as a collaboration between Prachyanat and Abs Xem.