Sheela Gowda, ‘Loss’, 2008, Guggenheim Museum

Installation view: Lasting Images, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, October 14, 2013–January 12, 2014

Image rights: © Sheela Gowda. Photo: Kristopher McKay © Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York

No Country: Contemporary Art for South and Southeast Asia, Guggenheim UBS MAP Global Art Initiative, May 10 – July 20, 2014 at the Centre for Contemporary Art, Singapore.

Collection: Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, Guggenheim UBS MAP Purchase Fund

About Sheela Gowda

Bangalore-based Sheela Gowda creates sculptures and installations from cow dung, metal barrels, found wood, incense, and human hair—all materials that are charged with the culture and politics of her native India. Gowda’s work often addresses the fraught experience of oppressed minorities like women, migrant workers, and untouchables in Indian society. In And Tell Him of My Pain (1998/2001/2007), Gowda connects themes of violence to gender politics by threading 360-foot-long strings through bundles of needles, amassing an elegant but ominous network of serpentine, blood red lines. For Darkroom (2006), she created a hut from large found oil drums; from the exterior, it resembled a small, makeshift home in an urban slum, but from the interior—thanks to a constellation of perforated holes—it doubled as a window into an expansive night sky.

Indian, b. 1957, Bhadravati, Karnataka