An Intriguing Group Show Explores the Ethnic Identities of India’s Diaspora Artists
Sohan Qadri merged nonfigurative painting with Eastern philosophy in his lush works on paper. Born in Punjab, Qadri left India in 1965 to travel through Africa, Europe, and North America. He began painting colorful, abstract canvases while briefly living in Zurich. From the 1980s until his death in 2011, Qadri created Tantric paintings by carefully incising and altering large sheets of paper and covering the sheets with luxuriant hues, often using subtle variations of the same color. The rippled papers have an almost three-dimensional appearance, and, when coupled with the coloring, create rich optical effects that transcend formalism. Each work traces the artist’s mental state during its production; “When I start on a canvas, first I empty my mind of all images. I dissolve into all primordial space,” the artist once said.
Indian, 1932-2011, Punjab, india, based in Copenhagen, Denmark