Artist Nalini Malani is to receive the first Contemporary Fellowship awarded by the National Gallery, and supported by Art Fund.
The new National Gallery Contemporary Fellowship with Art Fund is a pioneering, peer-to-peer collaboration with a non-London collecting institution, which this year is the Holburne Museum, Bath. The Fellowship, which is awarded to an artist of international standing and renown with a major body of work that has significantly contributed to 20th and 21st century art, is part of the National Gallery’s Contemporary Programme, sponsored by Hiscox.
The two-year research, production, and exhibition programme will allow Malani to work in close collaboration with specialists from both the National Gallery and the Holburne Museum to study the institutions and their collections and to create new art for an exhibition in Bath and London during 2022–23. The research and production process and final artworks will be documented in a publication and the Holburne Museum will have the opportunity to acquire a work which has been created as part of the Fellowship.
Nalini Malani, born in 1946, lives and works in Mumbai, India. Graduating from Sir JJ School of Art, Mumbai, in 1969, her practice began with experimental film and photography. From the late 1980s onward, Malani’s work increasingly questioned conventional painting traditions; reaching a wider audience and consistently speaking up against the rise of political oppression.
Malani has been a major figure in a period of artistic globalisation. For over five decades, her work has focused on human and universal aspects of conflict, giving a voice to the stories of those marginalised by history – particularly women.
As a pioneer of video art in India, she creates immersive installations, theatre, ephemeral wall drawings, erasure performances and her signature ‘shadow plays’. Her artworks focus on themes of transnational politics, the ramifications of globalisation, and the critical examination of gender roles.