Jan 16th 2021

South Asia Institute has invited Aziz Sohail to produce Spotlight on Chitra Ganesh. Chitra will be in conversation with Dr. Natasha Bissonauth discussing Chitra’s work, representation, narratives and agency. The spotlight is accompanied by virtual animations hosted on SAI’s website from January 9th – January 23rd.

Register here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/chitra-ganesh-in-conversation-with-dr-natasha-bissonauth-tickets-135563113923


For the past 20 years, Chitra Ganesh’s drawing based practice has shed light on narrative representations of femininity, sexuality, and power typically absent from canons of literature and art. Ganesh’s installations, comics, animation, sculpture, and mixed media works on paper often take historical and mythic texts as inspiration and points of departure to complicate received ideas of iconic female forms. Her studies in literature, semiotics, and social theory have been critical to a steady engagement with narrative and deconstruction that animates her practice.

Her work has been widely exhibited in the United States, Europe, and Asia, with solo exhibitions at PS1/MOMA, The Warhol Museum, Göteborgs Konsthalle, Brooklyn Museum, Rubin Museum, Kitchen, and the Leslie Lohman Museum of Art, where her commissioned installation, A city will share her secrets if you know how to ask, is currently on view through October 2021. Ganesh’s work has been exhibited internationally, at the Hayward Gallery, London, UK; Saatchi Museum, London, UK: Fondazione Sandretto Re Rebaudengo, Italy; Instituto Valenciano de Arte Moderno, Italy; the ZKM Center for Art and Media, Germany; Göteborgs Konsthall, Germany; Arthotek Kunstverein, Göttingen, Germany; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Shanghai; the Gwangju Contemporary Arts Centre, Korea; the Prince of Wales Museum, Mumbai, India; Indira Ghandi National Centre for Arts, New Delhi, India; Devi Art Foundation, India; the Kochi Biennial, India; the Dhaka Art Summit, Bangladesh among others.

Her work is held in prominent public collections including The Museum of Modern Art, The Smithsonian Museum of American Art, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Berkeley Museum of Art, San Jose Museum of Art, and the Whitney Museum. She is the recipient of numerous awards, including grants from the New York Foundation for the Arts; Printed Matter; Art Matters Foundation; John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation; the Joan Mitchell Foundation; and the Hodder Fellowship at Princeton University, the Pollock Krasner Foundation, and a 2021 Anonymous Was A Woman award. Ganesh received her B.A. from Brown University, her M.F.A. from Columbia University, and attended Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn.


Natasha Bissonauth is Assistant Professor at The College of Wooster in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies. She completed her Ph.D. in Art History at Cornell University (2017) and works on queer and feminist visual cultures from South Asia and its diaspora. Recent publications include “Sunil Gupta’s Sun City: An Exercise in Camping Orientalism” (Art Journal;  2019), “The Future of Museological Display: Chitra Ganesh’s Speculative Encounters” (book chapter in Museums, Sexuality, and Gender Activism, 2020), and “The Dissent of Play: Lotahs in the Museum” (South Asia Journal, 2020). New research interests include examining the role of the speculative in the study of indenture studies.

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