Paula Sengupta

Born in 1967, Paula Sengupta is an artist, academician, curator, researcher and a writer who works with diverse mediums and techniques such as found objects, hand embroidery, chintz, muslin, woodblock, nakshi kantha and applique.

Paula’s repertoire comprises broadsheets, artist books, installation-performance work, and community art projects. Her work explores domestic spaces where patriarchal conceptualizations of traditional gender roles place restrictions on women. Her practice also interrogates the impact and relics of colonial rule, often juxtaposing the oriental with the occidental. These themes are intimately connected with Paula’s family history, which is revealed through her use of text in the form of historical record and poetic narration. The autobiographical nature of her work centers on a desire to return to her family’s ancestral home in Bangladesh, while recording the experience of exile, enforced migration, and the resultant physical and psychological displacement during India’s partition in 1947.

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Paula has exhibited at Akar Prakar, Kolkata; Gallery Espace, New Delhi; Drik Gallery, Dhaka; Nehru Centre, London, among other galleries. She has also curated shows in Kolkata and has participated in residencies at Britto Arts Trust, Dhaka; and Kala Art Institute, Berkeley, California. She is the recipient of the Charles Wallace India Trust Research Grant.

She is currently working as Assistant Professor in the Printmaking Department at the Visual Arts Faculty, Rabindra Bharati University, Kolkata; and also serves as secretary of Khoj International Artist’s Association, Kolkata, an artist-led initiative for promoting alternate art practices. From 1999 to 2003, she was a guest faculty at the National Institute of Fashion Technology, Kolkata.

Paula Sengupta is also the author of The Printed Picture: Four Centuries of Indian Printmaking, published by DAG, New Delhi; and Foreign & Indigenous Influences in Indian Printmaking with LAP Lambert Academic Publishing, Saarbrucken, Germany.

The artist lives and works in Kolkata.

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