Chandraguptha Thenuwara's interdisciplinary practice deals with the politics of memory and violence; extensively confronting the 'glitch' in Sri Lanka's obsession with beautification, even at the expense of erasing its recent history. His wider body of work includes sculpture, painting, drawings, public monuments, lectures, and curatorial and collaborative projects, all of which are informed directly by his activism. Drawing from a repository of leitmotifs such as barrels, barricades, lotuses, guns, soldiers and stupas, Thenuwara's artist-activist interventions are intertwined with the sociopolitical developments in Sri Lanka.Read More
Thenuwara (b. 1960, Sri Lanka) founded the Vibhavi Academy of Fine Arts (VAFA), an artist-run school dedicated to fostering the still-fledgling Sri Lankan contemporary art scene after completing a postgraduate programme in Fine Arts from the Moscow State Institute (formerly in the USSR). His work has been featured in Cities on the Move (1997 - 99), curated by Hans Ulrich Obrist and Hou Hanru, Pop South Asia: Artistic Explorations in the Popular at Sharjah Art Foundation (2022), Indra's Net curated by Sandhini Poddar at Frieze London (2022) and Notations on Time curated by Sandhini Poddar and Sabih Ahmed at Ishara Art Foundation (2023). In 2022, Thenuwara presented a sculptural installation in Personal Structures, European Cultural Centre, a collateral exhibition of the 59th Biennale de Venezia. His works belong in institutional collections at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum in Japan, and the Queensland Art Gallery in Australia.
Text courtesy Saskia Fernando Gallery.