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BHARTI KHER: Matter by Daina Augaitis


by Daina Augaitis

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Bharti Kher is a contemporary Indian artist whose work encompasses painting, sculpture and installation. Relocating to New Delhi after studying art in Newcastle, UK, Kher's practice explores cultural misunderstandings and social codes. Hers is an art of dislocation and transience. Likening herself to the well intentioned ethnographer investigating her culture, Kher delivers a forceful reinterpretation of India's present and its history. Following an accidental encounter with a woman wearing a sperm bindi on her forehead, Kher made bindis a central motif in her practice. Bindis swarm over Kher's sculptures and are deployed in vivid chromatic constellations. Arranged en masse, each dot or squiggle can be understood as a person, their placement analogous to demographic movement--the migrations of a population. 'Bharti Kher' focuses on the artist's exploration of identity, aiming to bring together works that speak especially to the perceptions and realities of being female today. Kher's vivid representations of the ageing female body serve as witness to the pressures our society places on keeping bodies young. Other sculptural works explore women in relation to domestic spaces. Illustrated throughout with images of Kher's beguiling artworks, this publication features contributions from eight distinguished writers offering psychoanalytic, literary, cultural and political readings of Kher's sculptures, paintings and installations. Published in partnership with the Vancouver Art Gallery. 120 illustrations… (more)
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