Across a poetic and painterly practice that has built a nuanced visual language based on both research and personal experience, Biraaj Dodiya considers the ways in which humans process grief. The artist's vast experience in both traditional and contemporary media is evident in her range of paintings, sculptures, and painting-sculpture hybrids.Read More
Daughter of Atul and Anju Dodiya—a pre-eminent artist-couple—Biraaj Dodiya experienced a broad range of visual modes through her regular visits with her parents to international museums and institutions, as well as chapels and cathedrals, from a young age. Today her work reveals the influence of a number of traditional and contemporary voices, with her favourite artists including Francis Bacon, Philip Guston, and Dayanita Singh.
Born and raised in Mumbai, Biraaj Dodiya decided to study in the United States for the open and multidisciplinary frameworks under which art is taught there, ultimately settling on the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC) in part for its attachment to the Art Institute of Chicago—the second-largest art museum in the country. After receiving her BFA in 2015, the artist began studies at New York University, where she received her MFA in 2018.
Stone is a Forehead (6 March–30 June 2020) was Biraaj Dodiya's second solo exhibition ever and first solo exhibition with Experimenter, Kolkata. Focused—as with much of her practice—on concerns of memory and mourning, she presented a series of paintings and sculptures that explore the fluidity between the abstract and the representational, and between the ephemeral and the bodily.
In 2020, Dodiya discussed the work of 20th century Spanish painter Manolo Millares—known for his dramatic assemblages and paintings of mourning among others—in a video conversation with curator Elena Sorokina, organised by Galeria Mayoral and Experimenter.
Many of Biraaj Dodiya's oil-on-linen works from Stone is a Forehead consist of muted tones with seams of colours, such as pink (Sirens, 2020) and blue (Folded Sky, 2020). The exhibition also featured her ramps, which consist of traditional sculptural materials (wood, cement) as well as painting materials (oil, canvas) and everyday objects (gloves, a bicycle chain). Together these works manifested the artist's interest in, in her own words, 'the weight of a body, the absence of a body, a body in action, or a body laid out.'
Biraaj Dodiya has exhibited at galleries in Chicago, New York, and India. She also participated in India Art Fair, New Delhi, in 2020.
She now lives and works in Mumbai.
Biography by Ocula | 2020