Closet Quarries, 2008

Installation view, Chemould Prescott Road, Mumbai

Closet Quarries
acrylic paint, rubberstamps, plexiglas
68 x 68 in. I 173 x 173 cm
74 x 38 in. I 188 x 97 cm

This series of paintings using rubberstamps, were made from references of the great inlay patterns on the walls of the Taj Mahal and other Mughal architectural monuments found in India. The rubberstamps carry names and symbols found engraved on the red sandstones laid along the back wall of the Taj Mahal and on the pathways leading to the Taj; similar carved names of the craftsmen are also seen in case of other Mughal monuments. These names, retrieved from the archives of the Archeological Survey of India, intercept the austere inlay patterns through text and symbols evoking notions of labour, memory and the submerged, factual and fictional, histories and myths that surround monument-making.
As an artist what continues to interest me is the idea of representation which is fundamental to painting and the possibilities it carries for the generation of meaning through a calibrated interplay of image and form.
In ‘Closet Quarries’ I choose to work with the captivating inlays of the Taj and overlay it with a history invisible to the naked eye.