12 - 1:30 PM, Apr 29 (2022) (Asia/Calcutta)


Partha Mitter, Parul Dave Mukherji and Rakhee Balaram, eminent Indian art critics and editors of the new seminal publication, 20th Century Indian Art, published by Thames & Hudson in association with Art Alive, will be in conversation with artist Anita Dube and art historian Naman Ahuja. The discussion will cover the making of the book, and the key movements, artists and ideas that have come to define Indian modern and contemporary art in the present day. The conversation will be moderated by writer Premjish Achari, and be followed by a book signing and launch.

Anita Dube is an artist, critic and curator. Born in Lucknow, she completed her BA (History) from Delhi University in 1979 and her MVA (Art Criticism) from the Faculty of Fine Arts, Maharaja Sayajirao University, Baroda. As a member of the Radical Painters’ and Sculptors’ Association, she wrote the manifesto of the seminal exhibition Questions and Dialogue’ in 1987, and has since been producing critical, politically driven artwork across media. Dube is the co-founder and board member of Khoj International Artists’ Association and was curator of the 4th Kochi-Muziris Biennale. She has contributed texts to many publications on contemporary art.

Naman P. Ahuja is Professor at JNU (Jawaharlal Nehru University), New Delhi and Co-Editor of Marg Publications, Mumbai. His books include, Divine Presence: The Arts of India and the Himalayas, The Making of the Modern Indian Artist-Craftsman: Devi Prasad, provides a study of the impact of the Arts and Crafts movement on India. The Body in Indian Art and Thought explores a variety of social and aesthetic ideas around image-making. And most recently, The Art and Interiors of Rashtrapati Bhavan: Lutyens and Beyond explores the politics behind the interior design of the home of the President of India.

Partha Mitter is a writer and historian of art and culture, specializing in the reception of Indian art in the West, as well as in modernity, art and identity in India, and more recently in global modernism. He studied history at London University, did his doctorate with E. H. Gombrich (1970) and is an honorary D.Lit. at Courtauld Institute, London. He began his career as Junior Research Fellow at Churchill College, Cambridge (1968-69) and Research Fellow at Clare Hall, Cambridge (1970-74). In 1974 he joined Sussex as a Lecturer in Indian History, retiring in 2002 as Professor in Art History. His books include Much Maligned Monsters: History of European Reactions to Indian Art, Art and Nationalism in Colonial India 1850-1922, Indian Art, and The Triumph of Modernism: India’s Artists and the Avant-Garde 1922-1947.

Parul Dave Mukherji is an art historian and professor at the School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India. She holds a PhD from Oxford University. Her fellowships include Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Mass., Baden Wurttemberg at the South Asia Institute, SAI, Heidelberg, British Academy Award, London. Her Books and articles include InFlux: Contemporary Art in Asia (co-edited); ‘Whither Art History in a Globalizing World’, The Art Bulletin (2014); Arts and Aesthetics in a Globalizing World (co-edited) ; Ebrahim Alkazi: Directing Art – The Making of a Modern Indian Art World (editor) and Rethinking Aesthetics in a Comparative Frame (co-edited).

Rakhee Balaram is Assistant Professor of Global Modern and Contemporary Art and Art History at University at Albany, State University of New York. She previously taught at the School of Arts and Aesthetics, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and the University of Warwick. She holds double doctorates from Cambridge University and the Courtauld Institute of Art, London. In the field of South Asian art, she was the recipient of the Art Histories Fellowship in Berlin, Germany (2015-16), for her work on Amrita Sher- Gil and Rabindranath Tagore. Her publications on Indian art include those for Marg, Art India, Asia Art Archive, Devi Art Foundation, Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, ZKM Museum, Karlsruhe and Fowler Museum, Los Angeles.

Premjish Achari is a curator, and writer based out of Delhi. He started an in-depth curatorial platform called Future Collaborations aiming at theoretically and politically informed curation. He is the co-curator of Bhubaneswar Art Trail 2018. Achari currently heads the programme and the editorial for the exhibition ‘Lokame Tharavadu’ organised by Kochi Biennale Foundation and teaches art history and theory at Shiv Nadar University. He was the Co-curator of the public art exhibition “Navigation is Offline” as part of the Bhubaneswar Art Trail 2018. He is the winner of the Art Writers’ Award 2021 issued by Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia, along with TAKE on Art. He has received the Inlaks: Take on Art Travel Grant for Young Critics in 2016. In 2018, he received the Art Scribes Award by Prameya Art Foundation for developing new curatorial paradigms and as part of the Award, he attended a residency at Chateau de La Napoule, France.