Inspiredby the book title ‘Aroundthe World in 80 Days’ by Jules Verner, Around the World in 80 Washing Lines’ is an artproject by a conceptual abstract artist MahliaAmatina, as she explains “the project is an extension of the thoughtprocess behind the painting “Look! They Also Dry TheirClothes!” at her recent ‘Kathmandu Calling!’ Exhibition,and explores culture and diversity, as well as the universallyaccepted notion of hanging our clothes out to dry. She with this project aims at celebrating the human diversity by using ageneral domestic chore of washing clothes to highlight what connects us in anincreasingly divided world. It brings forward the connections andsimilarities of each washing line using a combination of photographs, textilesand a multi-sensory catalogue of effects including touch, smell and sound. Amatinaexplains the reason behind the project; “The project started as a means tohighlight similarities between us as human beings, in a world where we often focuson differences. The universal washing line is a perfect means to do this: weall have laundry to do; irrespective of who, what or where we are in the world.”Amatinainitiated the project by recording 80 washing lines photos from 80 differentcountries keeping into consideration the project being based around humanityand the similarities between people and their living styles. The pictures weresourced from around the planet, in addition to the photographs, short storieshave been written with every piece about the person behind each washing line inan attempt to bring forward further similarities that are shared with theglobal neighbors, and how they truly connect the people.
Withthis project Amatina exhibits an interactive autism friendly art exhibitiondepicting unique washing lines that provide visitors with an opportunity tointeract with each installation of clothes and get a glimpse of the personbehind the garment by reading a short story with real quotations. The exhibitionreaches out to a wide and diverse audience including those suffering withautism, alongside those to whom art is not fully accessible. As an autisticartist, Amatina created an exhibition that stood appealing and available tothose across the spectrum.
“It’s been a real eye-opener learning abouthow something which is so simple and taken for granted in the Western world issuch an elaborate affair in countries like India and Pakistan. I’ve thoroughlyenjoyed having the opportunity to explore culture and diversity in the localcommunity, and seeing how residents relate to the universally accepted notionof laundry.”