Flared Shift Dress

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Vanita Gupta

If one were to focus on the look of Vanita Gupta’s oeuvre, it would encompass characteristics of sculpture, installation and drawings, interspersed with quotidian and provocative videos that loop in melancholic shifts - the stuff of workshop experiments that test the plasticity and strength of natural materials - metal, wood, or rubber. 

Vanita's artistic position is fluid with regard to the categories of materials she places before us but for the certitude and temperance, she grants to every object she composes. 

By conflating genres and pictorial means where the deadpan demeanor (literally a frozen stillness) of assembled figure objects and structures of installations stand assertively, she fundamentally forges a singularity of form and dimension as the concrete and visible profile of the constructed artworks. 

They are independent of each other carting aloneness as a votive relationship with an invisible audience; taut with a kind of prowess, corresponding with the dry fragments of aphoristic phrases running on the wall. 

By and large, one is led to a pivotal standpoint: that of circuiting pictorial elements to favor diverse material constituents. The sleeping life of the hardened sculpture seems to swell into wakefulness in its striving for organicity. It is a key aesthetic ingredient that the sensibility of this artist enfolds. 

Gupta, in this manner, is driven to imbue a degree of weightage that clothes her soft and solid objects. We see then, that urge to revive and manipulate material from a state of stillness to that of an anthropomorphized entity. This can prod and tease the mind into believing in the artist’s wizardry. For her, the worn, decrepit condition of castoff debris offers endless opportunities to consecrate such stuff into untitled statuary, icons, and calibrated videoed performances that disclose her formal intentions.

Concept Note by Roshan Shahani, Introductory Poem by Vanita Gupta.