Interview for AucArt Magazine
Shailee Mehta's artistic practice stems from an ongoing dialogue between a personal space of imagination and nostalgia, and the political knottings of history, memory and contemporary society. Working extensively with elements of figuration and embodiment, she situates the female body as a central agential motif in her explorations around femininity and visibility.
The concept of otherness forms a pivotal undergirding within her intentionality as an artist, and her studies of the body as site and stimuli incorporate a sensitive mapping of exclusion and disregard. She approaches overlapping structures of the public and the private through a vocabulary of mythology and superstition, creating a continuously evolving simulacra for the self and its manifestations. Her renditions of the body are framed within a constant processing of space and sentiment, activating an otherworldliness through weighty corporeality combined with an awkwardness of being. Otherness is a refrain, the body is a voyage of emotion, resignation and intensity, and her works represent a persistent rethinking of objecthood and violence.
Born in Indore (India, 1998), Shailee Mehta completed her Foundation Diploma from UAL, London in 2015 and is currently at The Slade School of Fine Art. She has been part of various group shows including STOMACH, Hoxton Arches Gallery (London 2017), AIRGENTUM Hoja de Ruta Residency (Spain 2018) and most recently, Space 118 (Mumbai, 2019).
Text by Annalisa Mansukhani