Artists > Varunika Saraf

VARUNIKA SARAF, “The cries, too, fall like rain in summer”, 2016, charcoal and watercolour on paper pasted on cloth, 254 x 283 cm / 100 x 111.4 in

Introduction

The work of Varunika Saraf is often discussed in relation to miniature painting. But while Saraf has studied miniature painting, and quotations from it frequently crop up in her work, this work is not a contemporary version of the genre (in the way that might be said of artists graduating from the National College of Arts in Lahore). And, while Saraf quotes from European painting (from Hieronymus Bosch for example) her practice seems only loosely informed by this tradition. Instead, she works a rich seam that brings together a range of different traditions and techniques – situating her practice at the intersection between painting, calligraphy, collage and textile art. Considering Saraf’s work in relationship to all of these different genres and her position between them, brings up a series of questions concerning the hierarchy of the fine and applied arts, the idea of ‘woman’s work’ and the cultural traditions of occident and orient which treat these categories differently.

Born 1981 in Hyderabad, India
Currently pursuing a PhD (Supervisor Dr. Kavita Singh), School of Arts and Aesthetics, JNU, New Delhi
M Phil, School of Arts and Aesthetics, JNU, New Delhi
MFA (Painting), University of Hyderabad
BFA (Painting), J.N.T.U. College of Fine Arts, Hyderabad
Lives and works in Hyderabad

Solo Exhibitions

  • 2010
    'The Chair in the Cloud', Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke, Mumbai
  • 2008
    'Tales of our Times', Kashi Art Gallery, Kochi

Selected Group Exhibitions

  • 2016

    'DWELLING', 10th Anniversary Show, Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke, Mumbai, curated by Ranjit Hoskote

  • 2015
    'EXCAVATION / ERUPTION', Vadhera Art Gallery, New Delhi, curated by Yashodhara Dalmia
  • 2013
    'Touched by Bhupen', Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke
  • 2012
    'Phantoms of Asia', Asian Art Museum, San Fransisco, USA
  • 2012
    India Art Fair, New Delhi, Presented by Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke
  • 2012
    ART HK 12, Hong Kong International Art Fair, HK, Presented by Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke
  • 2011
    'Fabular Bodies: New Narratives in the Art of the Miniature', Coomaraswamy Hall, Prince of Wales Museum, Mumbai
  • 2011
    '5th Anniversary Exhibition', Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke
  • 2011
    'India Inclusive: Contemporary Art from India', World Economic Forum, Davos, Switzerland, Curated by Tasneem Zakaria Mehta
  • 2009
    'Unfaithfully Yours', Gallery SKE, Bangalore, Curated by Alex Mathew
  • 2008
    India Art Summit, New Delhi, Presented by Empire Art
  • 2007
    'Emerging India', Royal College of Art, London, Presented by Art Alive Gallery and SA Fine Arts,London
  • 2007
    'Soft Spoken', Bombay Art Gallery, Curated by Bose Krishnamachari
  • 2007
    'Meandering Membranes', Shrine Empire Gallery, Kolkata
  • 2007
    'Generation Next', Art alive Gallery, New Delhi
  • 2007
    'Reading Paint', Gallery Soulflower, Bangkok
  • 2006
    'Kashi KAVA 2', Kashi Art Gallery, Kochi
  • 2003
    'A Walk of Art', Daira Art Gallery, Hyderabad
  • 2003
    J. N. T. U. College of Fine Arts Exhibition
  • 2003
    Telugu University Annual Exhibition

Awards

  • 2006
    Kashi Award for Visual Arts

Grants and Fellowships

  • 2012
    Summer Research Academy, Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles
  • 2012
    Charles Wallace India Trust Visiting Fellowship, Centre of SouthAsian Studies, Cambridge (Oct-Dec)
  • 2012
    Senior Research Fellowship,University Grants Commission, New Delhi (2010-12)
  • 2008
    Visiting Fellowship from the Max-Planck-Institute,Kunsthistorisches Institut, Florence (Sept-Oct)
  • 2007
    Junior Research Fellowship,University Grants Commission, New Delhi (2007-09)
  • 2004
    University of Hyderabad Scholarship (2004-06)
  • 2000
    J.N.T.U. Scholarship

Seminars and Conferences

  • 2012
    'This curio called 'Indian Miniature' c.2000, SSEA seminar, School of Oriental and African Studies, London, and ASA12, JNU, New Delhi
  • 2012
    'Souvenirs, Heritage and Fakes: The making of 'Indian Miniatures', SAAG, University of East Anglia and the SADACC Trust
  • 2012
    'Between a Museum and a Society: Revival of Paintings that Placed,' Himachal Pradesh on the Art Map of the World’, YBCA, New Haven, CT, USA
  • 2009
    'Exploring the Margins, History Association', Centre for Historical Studies, JNU, New Delhi
  • 2009
    'Visual Culture: Re-Imaging the Image'', SN School of Art, University of Hyderabad
  • 2009
    'Visual Cultures of British India', Graduate Student Summer Seminar, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, USA