iPak evades a purely singular artistic view of an historic and ongoing social tragedy. Rather it embraces a pluralistic approach: one that may engender a sense of history's polyphony, through the contribution of innumerable people's narratives. Moreover iPak is part of a wider research series, entitled M-I I-M.
Projects within M-I I-M formally-thematically investigate particular notions which have emerged in South and East Asia, such as:
dependent origination (in Sanskrit: pratiyasamutpada),
Dependent origination is a core concept of Buddhism: an idea of no thing existing of itself but always in relation to all other phenomena: proviking the notion of relational being.
Other concepts investigated (though not all at the same time!) include:
Akasha, a term in Sanskrit, signifies a space that has presence, amongst other meanings. It corresponds in part with the Japanese term ma, which has multiple resonances, including space-time, an emptiness that has presence, interval, and pause. The Japanese Zen term mu signifies void or nothingness, and has correspondence with the Sanskrit term sunyata, which also could be understood as void or nothingness. In certain contexts mu and sunyata could be understood as emptiness.
the being of space
the space of being
natures of inter-face
spectatorship and the 'a-spectatorial'
yugen - a concept significant in Japanese aesthetics, difficult to define yet signifiying dark, deep, profound, mysterious.
Ajaykumar has particularly engaged with these concepts in most of his recent work, not just with M-I I-M, with works such as zen gardens without the 'zen', a_m_m_s, tate modern, and radio play: see his personal website for more details.
Drawing on the dynamics of the tea ceremony (sado), his work is engaging with engendering spaces that are spaces of inter-action as well as of immersion and contemplation; with kinaesthetic, architectonic processes. Spaces akin to what Zen teacher Daisetz Suzuki describes as psychospheres.
Ajaykumar is examining these concepts beyond their original cultural and (in some cases) religious contexts; interrogating them in the context of contemporary technological practice, using diverse materials and formats. Given the Buddhist notion that 'all phenomena reveal the true entity' this investigation engages with multifarious technologies including computer technology.
M-I I-M is a series of science-art projects -
internet art works, installations, conference presentations, lectures,
talks and articles.
The series includes:
- concrete lecture 1 - an interactive-immersive text, published with
a specific title in Leonardo, Journal of the International Society of
Art, Science and Technology.
- concrete lecture 2 - an interactive-immersive text, to be published with a specific title in the
South African Journal of Art History.
- asylum: an installation in development.
- how does the psychiatric subaltern speak? - an article to be published shortly.
- a presentation made on the theme at
ISEA2006/ZeroOne San Jose: A Global Festival of Art on the Edge, also entitled M-I I-M.
I-M is an ongoing project of particular community and political
engagement in relation to digital technology, involving those who
appear to inhabit the margins of society including the digital society.