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Anita Agarwal

I am a multidisciplinary artist from India presently based in London. Working across moving image, performance, installation, mark-making, and print; Archives, and social histories inform a provocative approach to storytelling within my practice.

My practice is dialogical, socially engaged and activistic in its approach. I am a feminist who through my art practice interrogates and pushes the socio-political parameters experienced in day-to-day life, these could be my own lived experience or of others.

 

I call myself a "Respons(able)" artist; someone once told me that being responsible means being able to respond. As a visual artist, I respond to an event, a site, or a provocation through my work. My response, although intuitive is built on a strong foundation of comprehensive research, to sieve out ‘any emotional hyperbole, false consciousness, madness or the perfunctory navel-gazing of the self-absorbed’. Audre Lorde writes that ‘emotions’ are ones political and life resources, and that we must make use of our anger/our frustrations, letting the anger spill out into a poem or a text. And that's the point of departure for any of my work, a poem or a text, which later develops and morphs into other formats.

 

I strive to achieve playfulness and humour in my works, as through humour it is possible to collide into other spaces, allowing people to relax and ease out into areas that would be otherwise difficult and awkward to navigate.

 

Having travelled and lived in diverse cultures and geographies archives, and social histories inform a provocative approach to storytelling within my practice. My work explores the intersections and positions within cultures, that are often mirrored in nuanced texts/everyday phrases; reasons of their existence and origins fascinate me, often becoming the starting point of my work. These cultures when in juxtaposition create interesting contrasts and patterns of intrigue and humour.

 

Art provides me an opportunity to fiercely engage with the world through the lens of indigenous philosophies of oneness of everybody and everything and universality of my own land, (Asian), in opposition to a western Anthropocene mindset/philosophy. Revolutionary thinkers like Donna Haraway and Silvia Federici prove to be the great beacons for my practice led research providing a 3rd plane/axis in kinship and assimilation. These when in juxtaposition create interesting contrasts and patterns of intrigue and humour.

 

 There is a continual search to find and create new language(mediums) to express fearlessly and to create spaces where this response can be possible, through curating such spaces as in show SW11ndows, or through the workshops ‘Let’s make sense’.  As individuals or even coming together collectively in form of workshops, I am inspired by The Feedback Theatre, and the Array collective.

I enjoy working in collaboration with other artists, as I feel that it brings out the best in me. I am particularly inspired by collaborations of Sheila Galani & Sue Palmer; Keiken, and Cao Fei.

 

 I try to initiate and collaborate to create spaces to reflect, imagine and strive for possible new (ideal) worlds. As well as create spaces where the responses to these reflections and imaginations can be possible. Spaces, where one comes individually or collectively together in the form of workshops, exhibitions, or public interventions.

My commitment to keep an ongoing inquiry and re-evaluation of where and how art can be seen and experienced has resulted in collaborative curatorial endeavours such as SW11NDOWS and Hanover Space Project, the latest being AP.AART.MENT77 which is a socially engaged and site specific pop-up residency due from 22nd-29th of Aug 2021.

 

Sustainability and sustainable lifestyles are a subject that I am passionately engaging in throughout my practice. Sustainability for me is a way of living, a way of being, both as an individual and an artist. As an artist my way of working and the choice of materials is very much informed by it.

 

 

 

 

 

 

CV-

 

2019-2021     Masters in Contemporary Art Practices- Public sphere pathway, Royal College of Arts, London

2018-2019     Graduate Diploma in Fine Arts Chelsea college of Arts and Design, UAL.

2017                The Art Students League of New York, US.

2004-2008 Triveni Kala Sangam, New Delhi.

 

  • August 2021: AP.AART.MENT77 a pop-up residency initiated and curated collaboratively, London.

  • August 2021: Day long art Performance, The Clapham Park ArtBank, Clapham Park Cube.

  • July 2021: RCA 2021 Cromwell Place Gallery, London.

  • March 2021: Sound and spoken text work on Montez Radio.

  • March 2021: online festival, Everything for ever.

  • March 2021: ‘State of The Art”, online symposium, London.

  • February 2021: Co-curated a physical show, ‘SW11ndows’ London.

  • January 2021: ‘This Too Shall Pass’, 20th floor Balcony, London.

  • December 2020: ‘CAPbaret 2020’ Twitch.

  • October 2021: 'MIND THE GAP', 20th floor Balcony, London.

  • August 2020: SVA Gallery, Stroud, England.

  • May 2020: 302_direct, CAP festival.

  • May 2020: MI, ICA/LUX.

  • May 2020: Instagram takeover, @low_res_camera_roll

  • May 2020: Symposium- The Museum without a Public

  • March 2020: Hanover Space Project, Peckham, London.

  • February 2020: The WIP Show, RCA, London.

  • November 2019: Workshop with PSC, Coventry Biennial, U.K.

  • June 2019: The Parade Ground, The Degree Show, Chelsea College.

  • May 2019: Safehouse 1&2, Copeland Road, London.

  • May 2019: The Cookhouse Gallery, London.

  • March 2019: Art #23 Gallery, Bermondsey, London.

  • March 2019: ‘Cabaret’, Canteen Annexe, Chelsea College, London.

  • February 2019: Triangle Space Gallery, London.

  • December 2018: Chelsea college, Mixed medium installation

  • October 2018: ‘Parallax’, Poland.

  • September 2017: Visual Art Gallery, Indian Habitat Centre, New Delhi.

  • December 2016: ‘Confluence-2016’ AIFACS, New Delhi.

  • December 2016:  Jaipur art summit.

  • October 2016- India Art Fair, Nehru Centre, Mumbai.

  • September 2014- Represented by The Aura Art Gallery, in The Art Index, Mumbai.

  • March 2012- ‘Colours’ annual show at Coomaraswamy Hall, Mumbai.

  • February 2012- ‘Praxis’ 4 artist show at Coomaraswamy Hall, Prince of Wales Museum, Mumbai.

  • September 2010- ‘ART SHOW’ Sponsored by HSBC, Maryland USA.

  • July 2009- Solo Show at Triveni Art Gallery, New Delhi

  • November 2008- A group show at AIFACS-New Delhi.