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A fearless combination of madras check lungi topped with a zippered hoodie, Prem knows he doesn’t need to give up his chappals and dupatta to wear a fitted cap
From the Firangi Rang Barangi series
This print is available for viewing at Saffronart's New York gallery
About Meera SethiMeera Sethi is an Indian-born, Toronto-raised artist whose multi-disciplinary practice explores the intersection of material culture and migration, and the construction of self. Her art references Indian dress iconography, contemporary fashion and popular culture. In the colorful journeys that traverse her canvas, Meera Sethi’s graphic design background informs the two-dimensional elements that are a defining feature of her aesthetic. Minute detail is juxtaposed with unexpected scale; saturated color combines with geometric abstraction.
Her work has been featured in VOGUE India, CNNgo, MTV Desi and numerous other publications. She has exhibited her work internationally, and regularly travels to India to expand her research and practice.
This collection includes fourteen works, two original paintings and twelve prints. These works are drawn from the artist’s recent series Foreign Returned and Firangi Rang Barangi.
Foreign Returned explores South Asian identities through time and space while offering a contemporary interpretation of iconography from 16th to 19th century Indian miniature paintings. Local Australian flora and fauna, an Indian tiffin, a Canadian passport, and a Komagata Maru pendant are some of the reference in these works of experiences of transnational movement. These diasporic portraits question what is foreign and where is home. Using an inversion of the Indian phrase "foreign returned", these works explore the experiences of descendants of South Asian emigrants in their diasporic homelands of Canada, the USA, Australia, the African continent, the Caribbean or elsewhere.
The politics of naming are highlighted in these works. Each figure has a “good name” followed by a short Anglicized version in parenthesis. “Good name” is a literal translation of the Hindi words “Shubh Naam” that refers to a person’s legal name. Whether through voluntary assimilation, social pressure or misnaming, each abbreviated title points to a larger story of the complexities of migration, identity and belonging.
Firangi Rang Barangi (Hindi for "colorful stranger") explores the relationship between identity, dress and hybridity. Combining North American street style with Indian textiles, garments and jewelry, this series re-imagines identity across borders.
These works exhibit a fearless use of color, bold pattern and finely rendered detail. These Firangis are equally at home in New York and New Delhi. Each is distinctive, layered with cultural history and personal style.