A Conversation With : Rollie Mukherjee, Freelance Artist and Art Critic based in Baroda, Gujarat
Updated on: 19 Jun 2016
Rollie Mukherjee has created a remarkable series of Kashmir-centric artworks — despite never having visited Kashmir
Tell us how your show came to be. Having never visited Kashmir, how did you come to engage with the place and the issues people face there?
My show focuses on the notion of female agency, memory and remembrance as resistance in the context of Kashmir. I wanted my works to question the meta-narratives that try to silence the voices of Kashmiri people. I wanted to de-centralise the Indian point of view by highlighting the viewpoint of Kashmiris.
I have never visited Kashmir, but I met a few Kashmiri people in the '90s. They used to come frequently to our house for selling warm dresses and carpets. They used to share their problems and talk about the crisis in Kashmir at that time. That stayed with me. On Facebook, I came across the writings of many Kashmiri writers, activists, lawyers, film-makers and so on, which had an impact on my consciousness. More than art history books, I started engaging with political history. My first painting on Kashmir was titled 'willo' and was part of a show in 2007. It talked about the cold-blooded hegemonic State apparatus that ruins people's lives.
How and why did you choose to display your works in the Conflictorium museum?