Elektra Virtual Museum
Ladhamba Tayem; Future Continuous
5TH VH AWARDS - GRAND-PRIX WINNER SUBASH THEBE LIMBU [NP]
Ladhamba Tayem; Future Continuous borrows its name from verbal inflection that specifies time of action or state, where tayem is future and ladhamba is continuous in our indigenous Yakthung (Limbu) language. In line with my current practice, Adivasi Futurism (as I call it), I imagine futures where Indigenous peoples’ actions and existence will still be in the space-time continuum. This work imagines a conversation between two indigenous people from very different timelines, one being a historical figure - a 16th century Yakthung warrior called Kangsore fighting the colonial army, and the other being an indigenous astronaut or time traveller from distant future. They talk about time and space from their perspective timelines, and in doing so it asks the viewer- people in between their timelines - to investigate their own role or potential role in the space-time continuum. The time traveller indicates what the future might look like for us or possibilities we want to strive for, while the warrior reminds us of the fight against colonialism and struggles we shall overcome.
In the future, the Indigenous nationalities will have created a technique called thakthakma - which literally means to ‘weave handloom’, a term inspired by our ancestors’ weaving practice - a technique of entering different timelines or in other words weaving time. So, in a way I think of my works as weaving stories that are not linear but intricately interwoven. And along the same vein, this work plays with the idea of time as not something rigid but ductile or weavable, which in turn paves the way for questions like how we might want to weave the future.