Study for a totem I

About Seher Shah

Trained as an architect, Seher Shah brings virtuosic draftsmanship and firsthand knowledge of the ramifications of urban development to her drawings, photographic prints, and sculptures. Graphic, intricately detailed, and often monumental in scale, Shah’s works feature city plazas, urban grids, ancient ruins, famous religious and political monuments, and modern buildings isolated and fragmented, exploded, collaged together, or interrupted by imposing, black geometric shapes. Such powerful visual disruptions to these symbols of order and civilization suggest that modern cities—and particularly rapidly modernizing cities, such as Beijing or Dubai—are caught in a permanent cycle of excavation, ruin, and renewal, in which history and inhabitants are often pushed aside.

Pakistani, b. 1975, Karachi, Pakistan

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