CoCA’s ‘Not any Wall, not any Bench’ exhibiting at French Spring Festival

Saturday, 29 June 2013 00:00 -     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}

The Collective of Contemporary Artists (CoCA) will be exhibiting a collaboration of art installations by a number of local and foreign artists titled ‘Not any Wall, not any Bench’. The unique masterpieces will be installed at the French Spring Festival currently being held at the BMICH which is organised by the Alliance Francaise de Kotte. The French Spring Festival will show from 21 to 29 July and has provided the ideal platform for CoCA’s artists to exhibit their public art work. ‘Not any Wall, not any Bench’ is a fun interactive art work created by five established CoCA artists: Layla Gonaduwa, Chinthaka Thenuwara, Poornima Jayasinghe, Branka Ridicky and Lakisha Fernando as a treat for the public. The work is a unique collaboration between professional local and international mixed cultural contemporary visual artists. Public art, or the process of taking art to the public, is a concept CoCA has been keenly working on in recent times. The aim of CoCA is to make art accessible, thought provoking, influential and impacting to the public, in effortless everyday situations. Carefully formulated functional installations will help the growth of an individual in many ways as it promises to be perceptual, intellectual, aesthetic, emotional and aesthetically pleasing. CoCA’s wall art installations will aim to create an illusion representing change and movement, individuality or the concept of differences merging into a whole. The colourful bench installation will symbolise the co-existence of unique individuals while sitting together which symbolically encourages social, religious and ethnic harmony. It encourages dialogue; it encourages one to talk to a stranger, it encourages openness and acceptance and is a backdrop and a place for a greater tolerance, greater debate and creativity while depicting the mindset of our people. “This influence will manifest in the creativity and character building that is applicable to all professions and life itself. In this fast paced, ever changing, chaotic world this function is of paramount importance,” stated CoCA artist Lalyla Gonaduwa. According to Chinthaka Thenuwara and Poornima Jayasinghe, public art has the power to energise our public spaces, arouse our thinking, and transform the places we live, work, and play in, into more welcoming and beautiful environments that invite interaction. The full potential of public art has not been explored to its fullest capacity in Sri Lanka and exhibiting the art work in public spaces as a social justice message and in places accessible to the public will hopefully help unveil the discovery of a common heritage and shared ethical values as a popular and informal education method. This is one of CoCA’s key visions. The artwork is the stepping stone for the CoCA ‘Nomads’ ongoing travelling project initiated by CoCA’s committee members, to explore how cultural traditions interact in diverse locations in Sri Lanka. The next stage of the project will be held at the old CMC building in Pettah on 8, 9 and 10 August 2013. This will be organised by the Goethe Institut, Colombo, which is the cultural institute of the Federal Republic of Germany. CoCA’s future projects will expand to the diverse locations in Sri Lanka such as Jaffna, Galle fort, Cultural triangle, and the indigenous village Dhabana as well. The ‘Not any Wall, not any Bench” installations will go on auction as a fundraiser for CoCA. Visit - to get more information about instantly recognisable pieces of art that can be identified with CoCA.