Description - Sutapa Biswas: Lumen by Amy Tobin

Lumen, a survey of the four-decade career of British-Indian artist Sutapa Biswas, accompanies two solo exhibitions of the artist's work held in 2021–22. Biswas emigrated from India to the UK with her family in the 1960s. Taking the long histories of colonialism together with personal memories, Biswas's art meditates on questions of migration, identity and belonging. Her practice has consistently interrogated Western tradition and discourse, pushing past absences, exclusions and limited representations to make evident the entwined histories of culture and politics. This publication details Biswas's career from its origins in the Black Arts Movement in the 1980s to her important photographic installations of the 1990s and her subsequent major moving-image works, including her newly commissioned film Lumen. The first substantial publication on the artist in over 17 years, it features two new conversations with the artist and two commissioned essays. It also includes a republication of Griselda Pollock's important text on Biswas's work, along with a postface reflecting on their relationship in the decades since the essay's original publication. Published on the occasion of the exhibition: Sutapa Biswas: Lumen BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead (26 June 2021–22 March 2022) and Kettle's Yard, University of Cambridge (16 October 2021–30 January 2022). SELLING POINTS: . Lumen, Biswas's new film after which the book is named, explores both personal and broader social histories of British colonialism in India, and migration to the UK. Inspired by the artist's journey by ship with her family from Mumbai to Dover in the 1960s, Lumen gives voice to her mother and grandmother through a poetic and powerful monologue spoken by the actress Natasha Patel . Lumen explores migration, displacement and voyages by sea, as well as the lament for a homeland left behind . Biswas has consistently played an important role in promoting anti-colonial and de-colonising discourse in British art, as well as of British Asian women artists. Her work gives voice to marginalised female voices as well as exploring the gender, race and class aspects of imperialism and post-colonialism . The book reproduces a seminal essay on Biswas by Griselda Pollock, a former tutor of the artist, as well as a new text by Pollock reflecting on Biswas's work in the years since the first publication. Pollock is a major figure in the fields of feminist art history and gender studies . Biswas's works have been exhibited and reviewed widely, and are held in numerous collections including Tate and Arts Council England 38 colour, 30 b/w illustrations

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