Nalini Malani

Despoiled Shore

1946- India

In 1991 Nalini Malani collaborated with an Indian actress on a performance based on a play by German dramatist Heiner Mulle. The play is a contemporary reinterpretation of the Greek drama "Medea." This painting was made as part of the stage set for the performance. Beginning on the left side of the screen, with the depictions of Western anthropologists being guided by local people, Medea and the betrayal of Jason her husband, combatting women, and scenes alluding to the encroachment of Western culture, the ancient revenge play is overlaid with the history of colonialism. Lastly, on two panels, there is a tragic scene of the Mumbai Riots which broke out during the production of the play. A pioneering female artist, highly productive since the 1980s, Nalini Malani re-envisions Medea as a life-size woman, and by doing so emphatically confronts not only gender but also the violence and domination that has been repeated throughout human history. (NT)

Work description

Title Despoiled Shore
Name of the Artist Nalini Malani
Year 1993
Medium acrylic, charcoal on gypsum board and hardboard
Size 244.0×1074.0 cm