The Art of Dislocation: Conflict and Collaboration in Contemporary Art from South Asia


Charles A. Ryskamp Research Fellowships


School of Art + Art History + Design


This project identifies collaboration as a hallmark of contemporary art in South Asia and a critical response to globalization since the 1990s. Through close analysis of artists and artworks from India, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka, it contributes to a growing art historical literature on contemporary art, which has focused on Western sites and figures. It examines connections and disjunctions between art produced in the nation-states of South Asia relative to each other and to the West, engaging research in anthropology, geography, and political theory on transnational networks, intercultural exchange, and regional hegemonies. It analyzes how artists have responded to conflicts—defined along religious, ethnic, caste, linguistic, classed, and gendered lines—over place by embracing a collaborative practice of art that engages and departs from existing models of site-specificity and social activism. These collaborative practices offer new perspectives on the constitution of artistic identity, political authority, and art worlds.