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Ayesha Kidwai

Painting
1988 (made)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

The work depicts one of the artist's young neighbours: Ayesha Kidwai. The subject appears in a number of her works, often with symbolic images of power such as planes and cars which are also found here. As in many of her works, Singh uses a child-like style to portray Ayesha, inserting her figure on a flat green background (garden). Above, framing the head of the woman, are six older women dancing in an implied semi-circle. To enhance the topsy-turvy nature of the scene, Singh depicts a little bird upside down pecking at Ayesha's ear (left) and on her right, a little tree.

Arpita Singh was born in 1937 in West Bengal. Singh trained at the School of Art, Delhi and the Delhi Polytechnic 1954-59. Since the beginning of her career Arpita has been assiduously learning the craft of painting in rhythm with her absorption of modernist reductionism. Her naive paintings are unlaboured and particularly piquant in their comments on the 'space' of women and the girl child in society, as well as the atrophied sensibilities of modern man vis-a-vis the growing domestic violence and social injustice. Arpita literally builds up the painted surface with both oil and watercolour. The surface tension created by the short, overlapping patches of pigments and tones is often transmitted to the surreal surprise which arise out of the synchronicity of domestic objects, flowers and guns, soldiers and blood.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Painted in watercolour on paper
Brief Description
Painting, Ayesha Kidwai in the garden, by Arpita Singh, watercolour on paper, Delhi, 1988
Physical Description
Painting, watercolour on paper. The subject is a young neighbour of the artist who appears in a number of her works, often depicted with symbolic images of power such as planes and cars, as seen here. Above, framing the head of the woman, are six older women dancing in an implied semi-circle. To enhance the topsy-turvy nature of the scene, Singh depicts a little bird upside down pecking at Ayesha's ear (left) and on her right, a little tree.
Dimensions
  • Height: 47.8cm
  • Width: 35.7cm
1988 dimensions are from the accession register.
Content description
Framing the head of the woman, are six older women dancing in an implied semi-circle. To enhance the topsy-turvy nature of the scene, Singh depicts a little bird upside down pecking at Ayesha's ear (left) and on her right, a little tree.
Marks and Inscriptions
(Signature and date on lower right.)
Object history
Purchased from the Gallery 7 exhibition 'Festival of Indian Contemporary Art' at Smith's Covent Garden, 14-19th March 1988. Rp 88/488
Historical context
Arpita Singh was born in 1937 in West Bengal.

Singh trained at the School of Art, Delhi and the Delhi Polytechnic 1954-59. Between 1973 and 1993, Arpita had 12 solo shows in New Delhi, Bombay, Amsterdam and Werl in Germany. From 1960 to 1994 she participated in 46 national and international group shows which included the Festival of India in London, at the Royal Academy of Arts, 1982, Five Indian Painters, in Istanbul, Ankara and Belgrade, in 1985, Festival of India, Exhibition at the Centre Pompidou Paris, in 1986 and Indian Encounters in London in 1993.



The artist has been awarded many titles and prizes including the 'Parishad Samman in 1991. The artist lives and works in Delhi.
Subjects depicted
Summary
The work depicts one of the artist's young neighbours: Ayesha Kidwai. The subject appears in a number of her works, often with symbolic images of power such as planes and cars which are also found here. As in many of her works, Singh uses a child-like style to portray Ayesha, inserting her figure on a flat green background (garden). Above, framing the head of the woman, are six older women dancing in an implied semi-circle. To enhance the topsy-turvy nature of the scene, Singh depicts a little bird upside down pecking at Ayesha's ear (left) and on her right, a little tree.



Arpita Singh was born in 1937 in West Bengal. Singh trained at the School of Art, Delhi and the Delhi Polytechnic 1954-59. Since the beginning of her career Arpita has been assiduously learning the craft of painting in rhythm with her absorption of modernist reductionism. Her naive paintings are unlaboured and particularly piquant in their comments on the 'space' of women and the girl child in society, as well as the atrophied sensibilities of modern man vis-a-vis the growing domestic violence and social injustice. Arpita literally builds up the painted surface with both oil and watercolour. The surface tension created by the short, overlapping patches of pigments and tones is often transmitted to the surreal surprise which arise out of the synchronicity of domestic objects, flowers and guns, soldiers and blood.
Bibliographic References
  • Indian Contemporary Art, Post Independence, Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi. pp 278-279
  • Centre Georges Pompidou exhibition catalogue, Arpita Singh, from 5 March - 11 May 1986. p.6
Collection
Accession Number
IS.44-1988

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record createdJune 25, 2009
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