Have you been to the Pavilion Cabral Yard as a part of Kochi-Muziris Biennale? As you move to the second installation, you will be greeted by a black dog that is sitting on a rooftop. Pay close attention, and you’ll be amazed to know that it’s a man with a dog’s head. When you start wondering what it’s all about, you’ll be taken aback by a gut-wrenching groaning of a man, coupled with the moaning of the dog.
This installation, whose idea was conceived by B. Ramabhadran of KR Narayan National Institute of Visual Science and Arts, is inspired from “Vellappokkathil” – a short story by Thakazhi.
“The story talks about a Dalit man Chenaparayan, who is forced to leave behind his dog during evacuation because of floods in Kuttanadu. Once the water subsided, he swam back to find the corpse of the dog. The wistful moaning of the lone dog, at times akin to that of a man, brings up the deeper indefinable threads of existence that ebb and flow through life, man or animal notwithstanding is what the installation hopes to put forth in this form,” says Ramabhadran.
“The installation is novel as it recreates the feel of a story with certain sounds. The team was able to finish the project in very less time, however, have managed to present it without losing the essence of the story”, says Hruthu, one of the attendees.
Director Jayaraj, who had previously done a short film on the same story, inaugurated the installation and shared his experiences of “Vellappokkathil” with the audience.
The artwork was done by Sruthi EV and Ranjeesh Gopal. Mahesh MK, Sanal Mathew, Jacob Cherian and Amrith Sushakumar did the sound. Ajinsha, Unnikrishnan, Rahul Radhakrishnan, Sajeesh Swaminathan dealt with the creative design of the installation.