Bharti Kher – born London 1969
Bharti Kher’s oeuvre, which spans more than two decades and includes paintings, sculptures and ready-made objects, installations, displays an unwavering relationship with surrealism, narrative and the nature of things - inspired by a wide range of sources from Oppenheim to Bourgeois, Bacon and Blake, Kher’s work moves through time using reference as a counterpoint and contradiction as a visual tool.
Her chimeras, mythical monsters and allegorical tales combine references that are topical and traditional, political and post-colonial at the same time. Known for her extensive use of everyday, found objects and imaginatively transforming their identity, Kher empowers her often otherworldly creations to present themselves unabashedly as if they were a natural part of our culture and environment. Kher’s work often explores the notion of the self as a multiple, open to interpretation and shape-shifting.
Her art practice is intimately intertwined with her life, not only because she borrows motifs and artefacts for her work, but also because she has an inquisitive mind and a strong desire to understand sociological issues. Such characteristics endow Kher’s work with a narrative quality and fascinating interiority of things that frequently contradict her practice of addressing more global and collective concerns. This tension is precisely what leads us more deeply into Kher’s work and world and prompts us to reposition our own relationship to her individual pieces.