16 May You Said It Wouldn’t Hurt: Revisualizing (South Asian) History through the Grotesque
Rajkamal Kahlon (IHC Visiting Artist)
Wednesday, May 16 / 4:00 pm
3041 Humanities and Social Sciences Building
Rajkamal Kahlon is a New York-based artist whose work interrogates forms of colonial and racial authority in her dialectical engagement with historical texts. Kahlon’s lecture focused on her current project, which involves a series of gouache paintings that use as their base illustrations in the 1200-page Cassell’s Illustrated History of India, a colonial ethnography published in 1875. As a means of critiquing the will to “make” humans implicit in the visual practices backed by repressive regimes of power, Kahlon paints over the actual pages of Cassell’s Illustrated History of India and makes use of violent imagery, clashing colors, and images of the human body turned grotesque through its traumatic encounters with colonialism, military rule, and torture.