Art Market

The sculptor Huma Bhabha joined Xavier Hufkens’s artist roster.

Justin Kamp
Sep 22, 2020 9:17PM, via Xavier Hufkens

Huma Bhabha, We Come in Peace, 2018. Roof Garden Commission, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Courtesy of the artist and Salon 94, New York.

The artist Huma Bhabha has signed with Brussels-based gallery Xavier Hufkens. Bhabha, who was born in Karachi and is based in upstate New York, is known for her monumental, totemic sculptures crafted from salvaged materials. She joins fellow contemporary sculptors Antony Gormley, David Altmejd, and Thomas Houseago on the powerhouse Belgian gallery’s roster. Bhabha will also continue to be represented by New York’s Salon 94 and Los Angeles’s David Kordansky Gallery.

Bhabha’s sculptural practice is centered on juxtaposition—between organic and industrial, modern and ancient, human and inhuman. She creates her sculptures from a range of materials including discarded furniture, polystyrene boxes, clay, rubber, and metal, often carving or painting the sculpted surface. She draws on a wealth of reference materials, including ancient Greek and African sculpture, science fiction and horror, and memories of her youth in Karachi to create vaguely human, often menacing forms.

Xavier Hufkens said in a statement:

From the moment I encountered her impressive sculptural bodies, they have not ceased to resonate with me, both visually and emotionally. As an artist who emigrated from Pakistan to the U.S., her practice bridges a myriad of references—historical, human, political, and mystical—addressing both personal and collective trauma. It is an honor to represent her.

Huma Bhabha in her studio. Photo courtesy the artist and Xavier Hufkens.

Bhabha has exhibited extensively, including a solo show at MoMA PS1 and inclusions in the 2008 Gwangju Biennial, the 2010 Whitney Biennial, and the central exhibition of the 2015 Venice Biennale. She received international acclaim in 2018 for “We Come in Peace,” a pair of site-specific bronze figures the Metropolitan Museum of Art commissioned for its rooftop garden in 2018. Since then, she has shown in the 57th Carnegie International and the 2020 Biennale of Sydney, and had a major solo survey at the ICA Boston in 2019.

According to Artsy data, from 2017 to 2018 (the year of her Met rooftop commission), demand for Bhabha’s work increased dramatically, with inquiries on her works nearly tripling year over year. Demand for her work on Artsy has remained stable at that higher level in the last two years.

Update: September 23rd, 2020

This article has been updated with information about Huma Bhabha’s ongoing relationship with other galleries.

Justin Kamp
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