Sean Kelly is delighted to participate in TEFAF Online New York. The gallery will present Shahzia Sikander’s first ever free-standing sculpture, Promiscuous Intimacies.
With its sinuous entanglement of the Greco-Roman Venus and the Indian Devata figures, Sikander’s first sculpture in bronze explores the ‘promiscuous intimacies’ of multiple times, spaces, art historical traditions, bodies, desires, and subjectivities. The two female protagonists are modeled on the goddess in Bronzino’s, An Allegory with Venus and Cupid and an Indian Devata figure in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The work takes its title from an essay by Gayatri Gopinath in the forthcoming monograph, Shahzia Sikander: Extraordinary Realities, in which she writes, “In their suggestive embrace, the intertwined female bodies bear the symbolic weight of communal identities from across multiple temporal and geographic terrains. They evoke non-heteronormative desires that are often cast as foreign and inauthentic and instead challenge the viewer to imagine a different present and future. This backward glance demands that we understand ‘tradition,’ ‘culture’ and ‘identity’ as impure, heterogeneous, unstable, and always in process, disrupting taken-for-granted national, temporal, and art historical boundaries.”
Promiscuous Intimacies will be featured in Shahzia Sikander’s solo exhibition Weeping Willows, Liquid Tongues on view at the gallery from November 5 – December 19, 2020.