MFA Studio Arts
Acrylic Painting, Oil Painting, Drawings, Mix Media
Since childhood, I have been enduring mental harassment for being a woman from the community where I grew up, and it has made it challenging for me to lead the life I dream of living. I was born and raised in Vasai, India and the Indian society where I was raised, was not liberal. I observed the men in my community had a very conservative attitude towards women. In all aspects of life, they refused to support gender equality. As I became an adult, I realized, I was not the only one to face this kind of persecution; so many women throughout the world experience harassment and limitations in each day in the life. I connect to the events from my own memories and experiences in India. My artwork is a platform for me to share my struggles with the world courageously and to share the extent of the hardships of a woman. My ambition is to serve the community in general by highlighting issues faced by women in particular. I belong from an Indian society where the term “feminist” is criticized mainly for focusing too much on women already privileged and neglecting the needs and representation of poorer or lower caste women. This has led to the creation of caste-specific feminist organizations and movements in India. As an Indian citizen I prefer not to tag myself as a feminist artist, but to share my concerns of women without any class discrimination through my artworks. Currently, I am doing an artwork series highlighting issues related to women. I have formal training in Indian Classical Dance that contributes to my sense of a narrative approach of story-telling in my painting, sculpture and performance art. That training informs my decision making in the positioning of the figures in my works. Using that vocabulary, I narrate the stories I share through figurative drawings, colors, found materials, proverbs, and poems. I make artworks which eliminate caste, religion and cultural identity in the physical appearances of the figures in my art. The sounds I generate from my vocal cords, my dramatic body movements with highly emotional facial expressions, and the variety of found materials I incorporate create a possibility of a dramatic ambiance to the pieces. Window screens, textiles, and chains are some of the found materials I incorporate in my artworks and performances. I use acrylic and oil painting on canvas and combine these with textiles and found materials to make the experience of the painting seem more real and meaningful. A possibility of evoking an emotion or thought process connect my theme of sharing narratives of women’s oppression and survival.
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