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RANJANI SHETTAR

October 2, 2009 - March 5, 2010

“Like of most of Ms. Shettar’s work, it represents a strain of Indian contemporary art still overlooked in a global context: abstract work that wears Indian-ness lightly but still stands apart from familiar international forms, themes and styles.”

Holland Cotter, The New York Times

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Harp (Detail)

Known for large-scale sculptural installations, for her third solo in New York Ms. Shettar has created a group of smaller sculptural works, some mounted on the wall and others hanging from the ceiling. Delicately created from muslin and steel, the Bird Song sculptural works with curving, lyrical lines evoking feathers and flight, hang like floating musical notes of a melody. Other works also resonate with an ephemeral beauty found in nature. In another work, muslin cloths textured like weathered skin are stretched into five organic forms, each seemingly yielding to a pull that reveals its fragility with a gentle opening. Waiting for June is comprised of small baked terracotta shells which twist and turn, revealing tender cracks reminiscent of parched earth; poignant yet beautiful.

Shettar’s use of traditional and modern crafts to sculpt natural and industrial materials accentuates the tenuous relationship between industry and nature. She resolves this by uncovering the beauty within their co-existence and in the collaboration between man and nature. In creating environments with sculpture and installation, Shettar fuses the two realms together with dynamic yet graceful forms and textures; revealing the spectacle and magnanimity of natural phenomena. Seduced by their lightness, simplicity and openness, our experience of her works yields humility and a surrender to their splendor.

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Bird Song I, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

60" x 125" x 52"

Bird Song II, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin dyed in areca nut, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

51" x 48" x 44"

Bird Song III, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin dyed in areca nut, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

39" x 57" x 47"

Bird Song IV, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin dyed in kasimi, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

52" x 55" x 40"

Drumbeats, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin, tamarind kernel, wood, and lacquer

36" x 135" x 4 1/2"

Harp, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin, tamarind kernel, and wood

46" x 33" x 6 1/4"

Leap, 2009

Muslin on canvas and tamarind kernel 

15" x 56"

Waiting for June, 2009

Terracotta

15" x 14 1/4"

Bird Song I, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

60" x 125" x 52"

Bird Song II, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin dyed in areca nut, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

51" x 48" x 44"

Bird Song III, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin dyed in areca nut, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

39" x 57" x 47"

Bird Song IV, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin dyed in kasimi, tamarind kernel, and lacquer

52" x 55" x 40"

Drumbeats, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin, tamarind kernel, wood, and lacquer

36" x 135" x 4 1/2"

Harp, 2009

Stainless steel, muslin, tamarind kernel, and wood

46" x 33" x 6 1/4"

Leap, 2009

Muslin on canvas and tamarind kernel 

15" x 56"

Waiting for June, 2009

Terracotta

15" x 14 1/4"