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What Will I Do With All This Land?

What Will I Do With All This Land?

Exhibition 22 Jun - 31 Oct 2013, Kedleston Hall

Silver gelatin prints on archival paper. Photography: Munir Kabani, Costume design: Tabasheer Zutshi. Courtesy the artist and Chatterjee & Lal.

Calcutta born artist Nikhil Chopra works at the boundaries between performance, live art, painting, photography and sculpture. He devises fictional characters that draw on India's colonial past as well as on his own personal history. The performances are then documented in beautiful black and white prints.

The subject of this series, Sir Raja, is the quintessential privileged Anglicised Indian prince, who could have attended the Delhi Durbar and had his photographic portrait taken. Chopra placed Sir Raja in Kashmir, an important landscape in his personal history, and built a narrative around the stereotype of a wandering and melancholic Indian prince. Confronted with the supposed perspectives of power, he anxiously questions: "What will I do with all this land?"

Nikhil Chopra

Nikhil Chopra works across a number of media including performance, painting and photography to reflect upon personal histories and India’s colonial past.

Nikhil Chopra was born in 1974 in Calcutta and now lives and works in Goa. He studied art in Mumbai, India and Ohio, United States and has been internationally acclaimed for his work which blurs the boundaries between theatre, performance, painting, photography and sculpture. Chopra describes these many artistic processes as a form of storytelling that intermingles familial histories, personal narrative and everyday life. Drawing on autobiography, India’s colonial history and the fetishisation of ‘the exotic’, Chopra creates intense and deeply layered site-specific experiences for audiences which unfold over many hours and days, culminating most typically in an exhilarating fusion of performance and large-scale drawing which remains in the gallery space as a residue of the artist’s time spent there.

As well as exhibiting and performing work internationally, Chopra has created work for the Manchester International Festival and the Venice Bienniale.

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