Spectres of Memory
Anoushka Bhalla's practice explores existence through visual research into the materialization of collective trauma and the decay of collective intergenerational memory. Her art, vacillating between the abstract and the representational, is derived from historical archives of ethnic cleansing within the wider global landscape and her homeland of South Asia. Born out of histories of bodily trauma, the loom of death and the spectacle of genocide as seen through memories of ancestral massacres, local and global holocausts, histories of slavery, lynching and other modes of violences, I engage with art-making to contend with the loss of my ancestors who were martyred to these forgotten bloodbaths.
Using symbolically charged, primordial and archaeological elements like terracotta, charcoal, ash, dirt, shellac that symbolise history and the passage of time, the imagery in my work addresses lynching rituals, burial and mortuary practices, landscapes in the wake of destruction and portraits of colonial bodies evoking the collective unconscious of a traumatic past.
Anoushka Bhalla (b. India) is an artist based in New York City.
Press and Writings