with Anne Marie Culhane during the ”KHOJ 1999” – International Artist’s Workshop, Modinagar, New Dehli, India, 1999
from the Khoj web page:
”Culhane and Soltysik chose as their work an impersonation by themselves of two photographic images that were prominently displayed in the living room, of the founding father and mother of the Modi business empire. The artists replaced the original pictures in the frames with the photo images of themselves dressed up as the male and female Modis. Here, it is necessary to explain the immediate social context in which the artwork was done. The workshop site is a large house situated in an extensive area of land (named ‘Sikhribar) belonging to the Modi family, one of the wealthy industrial families of India who were also the founders of the Modinagar city. The house is given annually to Khoj as their contribution to the art event, where all the artists reside and work. All service personnel at the site as well as services (food, cleaning etc) are provided by the Modis, which also invariably includes numerous hierarchical relationships entertained by staff within the premises. During the workshop, the artists experienced numerous service related problems to which the Modis’ were held responsible, more or less. At the same time, some of the artists genuinely felt uncomfortable with the feudal and hierarchical power structure operational among the staff”.
“Anne Marie and he (Mariusz Soltysik) again collaborated on a photo project in which they photographed themselves as Gujarmal Modi and Dayawati Modi, replacing the patrons photos bearing down on all of us. Another debate began here around the »freedom of the artist« and the rupturing gesture of the avant garde”
excerpt from essay of Anita Dube, New Delhi, August 2000, catalogue Khoj’99