Subodh Gupta, Jalsa

Subodh Gupta

utensils in aluminium, steel, cable, wood, concrete, kitchen appliances
variable dimensions
Frédéric Jousset Collection
Courtesy of Galleria Continua

Gathering at the table and sharing a meal symbolizes a strong bond of family and intimacy in India. The diversity of religious and cultural groups in this country is accompanied by a series of customs that underline the distance between peoples. To denounce this difference, the artist uses food as a tool to speak of inclusion and tolerance.

Jalsa is a large house made up of thousands of pots, pans and utensils, discarded by their former owners. Each utensil carries different marks and stories. The artist chose these aluminum utensils for their aesthetic qualities and for the memories they embody. These objects are marked by the passage of time and carry with them all the people who have used them to feed, gather, live and celebrate. In this work, Subodh Gupta invites everyone to remember their first meals, and to question the universality of this act.

Biography of the artist

Born in 1964 in Khagaul, India. Lives and works in New Delhi, India.
Trained as a painter, Subodh Gupta has worked with a variety of media: performance, photography and sculpture. The rituals and symbols surrounding the preparation and consumption of food in India often feature in his sculptural practice. The objects he uses in his work play the part of emblems and icons that illustrate the complex social, economic and cultural situation in India today. His work highlights the physical presence of objects, the aesthetics and symbolic attributes of the materials, the relationships between space, time and bodies.