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ANJUM SINGH

I am still here

September 9, 2019 - January 4, 2020

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Remarkable Unremarkable, 2015-18


I am still here deepens Singh’s investigation into the dynamic, unpredictable internal world of the body. The works bring into view the intricate systems, the currents, flows, exchanges—as well as points of breakdown—that occur continuously within this internal realm. Moving deftly between visual modes, from fully textured canvases to the ethereal, delicate forms that seem to float on paper, Singh attests to the flexibility needed to bring this rich internal life to light. Indeed, I am still here attends not only to the body as lived experience, as felt from the inside, but also to the way this experience is translated into comprehensible form—the way the body is narrated, pictured, made sense of. Calling attention to the power of art, like science or medicine, to plumb the inner workings of the body, I Am Still Here creates its own vocabulary, honest and revealing, the often astonishing world that lies beneath the skin.

“'I am still here' is many things at the same time —disturbing, bold, moody, reflective and playful —but mostly a life affirming experience."

-The Telegraph

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Blackness (Detail)

Moving between two understandings of the body—one subjective, one far more objective—is an experience familiar to Singh, who responds in I am still here to the return and subsequent treatment of cancer first diagnosed in 2014. Making her body, even its supposedly broken parts, the object of her artistic attention, she casts light the similar process of objectification necessary to medical treatment: the need to designate, as in her painting Alien, some part of her own body “foreign,” “invasive,” somehow “out of place.” Often, this foreignness coexists with a fragile beauty—the delicate spread of blood-red ink in one of the watercolors both mesmerizing and sinister. In many ways, Singh adopts and plays with the perspective of medicine in these latest works: her name at the center of a hospital chart-like image reads as a kind of tongue-in-cheek artist’s signature, a way of asserting her identity as author as much as medium. Singh lends herself, literally, to this investigation, with the abandon that good patients are supposed to have—but not without resistance. Rather, Singh insists on looking back, on looking in. The artist’s view of her own body prevails here, and she depicts it as a world fervent with energy, with movement uncontained and uncontainable. The boldness and determination of her statement—I am still here—makes itself heard in the energy of even the most delicate of her works, a refrain that they repeat and carry forward, outward, onward.

“Anjum Singh has transformed personal afflictions to a more universal level of human experience in her layered images”

-Ella Datta

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Flower But Not (Detail)

I am still here builds on Anjum Singh’s career-long interest in systems of order, movement, and exchange—in particular, the way such systems are experienced within urban spaces. Maintaining always an interest in the individual’s navigation of the city environment, Singh evokes the complexity of metropolitan life: the shifts in perspective, strange juxtapositions, frustrations as well as freedoms, that make living in the city so distinct. With the adaptability and wry unsentimentality of the city-dweller, Singh brings both humor and frankness to the contemporary individual experience—the attempt to find a way within the unknowable spaces that surround us, whether within or without our bodies.

Exhibition Views

Exhibition Views Thumbnails

Cobweb in my head, 2018

Watercolor pencil & graphite on paper

32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Alien, 2018

Oil on canvas

60" x 30"

Flower But Not, 2015-16

Watercolor, graphite & dry pastels on paper

In 9 parts, each 32.75" x 25.5" x 1.5"

Still against white, 2018

Oil on canvas

30" x 30"

Inquire

Belly Button, 2018

Oil on canvas

36" x 60"

I Am Pink, 2016

Watercolor pencil on paper

13" x 9 3/4"

My Body - Candy Floss, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

In 5 parts, each 13" x 9 3/4"

Stain, 2015

Watercolor, graphite on paper

13" x 9 3/4"

Anjum F746047, 2015

Watercolor pencil on paper

13" x 9 3/4"

Heart (Machine), 2016

Oil on canvas

60" x 36"

Inquire

Broken, 2018

Oil on canvas

36" x 72"

Inquire

Remarkable Unremarkable, 2015-18

Watercolor, graphite & dry pastels on paper

In 24 parts, each 15" x 11 3/4"

Bleed Bled Blood Red, 2015

Watercolor pencil & graphite on paper

In 3 parts, each 18 3/4" x 15"

Blackness, 2015-17

Watercolor, graphite & dry pastels on paper

In 4 parts, each 32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Broken, 2017

Watercolor pencil on paper

32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Samples, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Dust storm, 2016

Oil on canvas

36" x 72

Mean Machine, 2016

Oil on canvas

72 " x 84 "  

Rainbow grid city, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

15" x 11 3/4"

Central Park, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

15" x 11 3/4"

Turbulence, 2018

Oil on canvas

72" x 36"

Dot Spot, 2015 -16

Watercolor, graphite & silver powder on paper

in 2 parts, each 13" x 9 3/4"

Epidermis, 2016

Watercolor, graphite & silver powder on paper

18 3/4" x 15"  

Turbulence, 2017

Watercolor, graphite & silver powder on paper

18 3/4" x 15"

High Voltage Keep Away, 2017

Watercolor pencil on paper

18 3/4" x 15"

Cobweb in my head, 2018

Watercolor pencil & graphite on paper

32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Alien, 2018

Oil on canvas

60" x 30"

Flower But Not, 2015-16

Watercolor, graphite & dry pastels on paper

In 9 parts, each 32.75" x 25.5" x 1.5"

Still against white, 2018

Oil on canvas

30" x 30"

Belly Button, 2018

Oil on canvas

36" x 60"

I Am Pink, 2016

Watercolor pencil on paper

13" x 9 3/4"

My Body - Candy Floss, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

In 5 parts, each 13" x 9 3/4"

Stain, 2015

Watercolor, graphite on paper

13" x 9 3/4"

Anjum F746047, 2015

Watercolor pencil on paper

13" x 9 3/4"

Heart (Machine), 2016

Oil on canvas

60" x 36"

Broken, 2018

Oil on canvas

36" x 72"

Remarkable Unremarkable, 2015-18

Watercolor, graphite & dry pastels on paper

In 24 parts, each 15" x 11 3/4"

Bleed Bled Blood Red, 2015

Watercolor pencil & graphite on paper

In 3 parts, each 18 3/4" x 15"

Blackness, 2015-17

Watercolor, graphite & dry pastels on paper

In 4 parts, each 32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Broken, 2017

Watercolor pencil on paper

32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Samples, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

32 3/4" x 25 1/2"

Dust storm, 2016

Oil on canvas

36" x 72

Mean Machine, 2016

Oil on canvas

72 " x 84 "  

Rainbow grid city, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

15" x 11 3/4"

Central Park, 2018

Watercolor pencil on paper

15" x 11 3/4"

Turbulence, 2018

Oil on canvas

72" x 36"

Dot Spot, 2015 -16

Watercolor, graphite & silver powder on paper

in 2 parts, each 13" x 9 3/4"

Epidermis, 2016

Watercolor, graphite & silver powder on paper

18 3/4" x 15"  

Turbulence, 2017

Watercolor, graphite & silver powder on paper

18 3/4" x 15"

High Voltage Keep Away, 2017

Watercolor pencil on paper

18 3/4" x 15"

Art Asia Pacific
Art Asia Pacific
Anjum Singh November 19, 2020

OBITUARY: ANJUM SINGH (1967–2020)

The Sunday Tribune
The Sunday Tribune
Anjum Singh November 17, 2020

Eminent contemporary Indian artist Anjum Singh passed away on Tuesday after losing a prolonged battle with cancer, art collector Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, said. She was 53.

The Indian Express
The Indian Express
Anjum Singh November 17, 2020

From mundane objects to rapidly changing surroundings and her own ponderings, for artist Anjum Singh the subject remained experiential. Her complex compositions held multiple layers within, including fragments of her experiences and fight with cancer, which she succumbed to on November 17 in Delhi. She was 53.

Mint
Mint
Anjum Singh November 17, 2020

The artist, whose deeply autobiographical works investigated the internal worlds of the body, passed away today after a six-year-long battle with cancer.

Art India
Art India
Maps of Wounds: Anjum Singh December 2019

Anjum Singh explores the dynamics of a disintegrating body, finds Shweta Upadhyay. 

 

The Hindu Business Line
The Hindu Business Line
Of agony and ecstasy November 8, 2019

Anjum Singh has transformed personal afflictions to a more universal level of human experience in her layered images

Open Magazine
Open Magazine
Illness as a Metaphor October 21, 2019

Anjum Singh dissects the corpuscular. She enters the internal domain of her own body and imagines the drama that is unfolding at the level of the cellular. She performs this surgical act with a painterly hand that seems convinced of its curative capabilities. 

Arteviste
Arteviste
A Review of Anjum Singh: I Am Still Here at Talwar Gallery, New Delhi October 11, 2019

Anjum Singh’s autobiographical exhibition I Am Still Here at Talwar Gallery in New Delhi, has easily been one of the most anticipated exhibitions of 2019. 

The Telegraph
The Telegraph
Viewing Gallery of the Pleasures of Pain September 21, 2019

Artist Anjum Singh’s time as caregiver to her body started in 2014, when she was diagnosed with cancer.

Business Standard
Business Standard
Art, the artist and her body August 30, 2019

Rarely has an exhibition been as keenly anticipated as Anjum Singh's forthcoming, and autobiographical I am Still Here, almost an invocation by the artist whose absence from the current art scene has been the result of life-threatening cancer which she has been grappling since 2014.

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