Shilpa Gupta: I Live Under Your Sky Too, 2004 – 2023 / Art Basel Parcours 2023

Shilpa Gupta: I Live Under Your Sky Too, 2004 – 2023 / Art Basel Parcours 2023. Basel (Switzerland), June 17, 2023.

Official description: Comprising a steel structure supporting illuminated lettering, Shilpa Gupta’s work centers on the unity and coexistence of cultures, and the inevitable fusion that results from the complex nature of this interaction as it spans divisions of space, generation, religion, politics and gender. With the poetic phrase ‘I live under your sky too,’ written in English along with its Urdu and Hindi translations, interwoven over several lines, the artist leverages language to highlight historical and present-day fault lines arising from an increasingly polarized world. The sentiment that Gupta deposits here as seemingly plain fact thus becomes an investigation into language and its implications. Only one of the phrase’s translations is illuminated at a time, urging a viewer to redirect their gaze to the “other,” and serving as a reminder that despite potential dissonance, everyone’s sky remains the same.

Shilpa Gupta is known for her politically charged installations, videos, and photographs. Influenced by her upbringing in 1990s Mumbai, Gupta’s work explores themes of identity, borders, and media or political propaganda. She works in a variety of disciplines, sometimes extending her practice to engage viewers in participating in shared experiences.

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