Bharti Kher: Virus

30 Apr 2008 – 17 Aug 2008

BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art

Gateshead, United Kingdom


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In her first UK solo show, the artist uses the symbol of a tree in her sculpture Solarum Series. The tree appears in the ancient mythologies of many cultures. Kher uses these references, including the mythical warnings of the speaking tree and combines them with contemporary references, such as the recent biological advances of cloning, and rejection personified in the fallen tree. Instead of leaves or fruit, the branches of Solarum Series bear the heads of hundreds of creatures. Alongside these mystical sculptures is Virus, a series of richly created panels covered with thousands of bindi. The bindi is a spiritual Hindu mark applied to the forehead to represent the third eye. The religious token becomes secular in the densely pattered artworks. Kher uses the symbol to highlight the ordering of human societies, patterns of migration and landscape and the passage of time.

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