“Who am I?” is the question that has always been the driving force for my work. Hindu, Indian and female are the words which make me up broadly. My work, I feel, comes from meditating upon these words, sometimes individually and sometimes by putting them together. The answers remain speculative as these parts of me have been deconstructed and reconstructed over and over again in different arrangements.
I was born a female in a Hindu family in India; I did not have a choice. I started learning from my visual environment, my mother’s bindi and sarees, our small temple in our house and my country as India. Since things are still done in a very traditional manner and with hands in India, my practice too involves that raw, handmade element.
I have always liked the idea of small things contributing to the big picture and so I use small patterns in my work. The other elements in my work are quite specific to the Hindu-Indian culture and especially to the female identity.
My inspiration comes from the traditional patterns on our clothes and the folk art of different regions. The use of bangles, threads, sindoor which are everyday objects in a Hindu-Indian household carry their own meanings and weave my artwork. These objects hold a different story and coming together in an artwork, they become words which tell a different story.
Being in the UK these constructions are looked upon differently. The objects somehow lose their meaning but somehow the artwork retains the general essence. My objective as an artist is to create a narrative which is nostalgic and dramatic. The dialogues between the artwork and the audience must be reflective and personal and not rigid. My work will always be true to the nature of my sex as I do not know what it is like to feel like my opposite sex. It will always reflect my roots and my clay, sometimes in an appraisal and sometimes in denial.