They Stole My Identity and Replaced It With a Myth
synthetic polymer, oil and gold leaf on canvas
152 x 122cm
Courtesy of the artist
Sid Pattni is an Indian-Australian artist who was born in London, raised in Kenya and currently resides in Western Australia. His studio practice seeks to tell specific stories of identity, culture and belonging. Pattni's work has been selected as a finalist for the Lester Prize, Blake Prize & Kennedy Prize. His body of work fuses orthodox portraiture painting with traditional Indian embroidery techniques. He was recently invited to give a TEDx talk about his practice in 2021.
'My painting is an exploration of identity, assimilation and cultural colonisation. The decorative borders are adorned with motifs synonymous with Indian miniature paintings. After India was colonised, local painters were told to change their artworks to suit British tastes; their creativity coerced into a pale imitation. In a defiant act, I resurrect the border on a large scale, amplifying its magnificence and reclaiming its cultural significance. The figure, devoid of facial contours, veils their identity, serving as a metaphor for the eroded self amidst assimilation, evoking a shared sense of bereft identity that transcends boundaries and questions ownership.'
This artwork will be on display in the 2023 Arthur Guy Memorial Painting Prize Finalist Exhibition from Saturday 25 November 2023 until Sunday 18 February 2024.
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