Conferences & Workshops
Art & Industry: (Post)colonial Landscapes in India & Wales: The industrial history of South Wales – and the coal miners’ strike in the 1980s – continue to be pivotal to the nation’s self-definition. For both India and Wales, the industrial past has contemporary relevance. This inter-disciplinary event, part of a collaboration between Welsh and Indian institutions, attempts to shed light on these over-looked industrial connections.
Introduction: Dr Zehra Jumabhoy, Art Historian and Curator (University of Bristol)
Panelists: Ceri Thompson, Curator, Big Pit, National Coal Museum & Dr Samuel Raybone, Art Historian (Aberystwyth University)
8 July 2022
Organised a ZOOM conference to accompany the exhibition Patterns of the Past: Weaving Heritage in Contemporary ‘Pakistani’ Art at the Grosvenor Gallery, London, in collaboration with Canvas Gallery, Karachi. The show included artists Adeela Suleman, Bushra Waqas Khan (Nominee for the Jameel Art Prize 2021), Liaqat Rasul, David Chalmers Alesworth (Nominee for the Jameel Art Prize 2016) and Ruby Chishti. The exhibition brought together these contemporary artists because each of them explores the politics of memory in their work, using textiles to unravel conventional notions of art, heritage and identity. The especially ‘tailored’ works within the show dismantled inter/national stereotypes about ‘Pakistani art’ and the conference had a similar aim. It pulled on certain thematic threads: South Asian heritage and textile history; ideas of British identity and current decolonising agendas with regard to both art history and British museum collections. Speakers included the exhibiting artists as well as Prof. Salima Hashmi, Zohreen Murtaza, Studio Carrom’s Priya Sundram and Nia Thandapani, Uthra Rajgopal, Amrita Jhaveri and Prof. Shehnaz Ismail.
18 September 2021
Co-organised 4-day Zoom Series, Imperial Subjects: (Post)Colonial Conversations between South Asia and Wales with Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea & Professor Daniel G. Williams, Swansea University, Funded by British Art Network, adapted for COVID.
Co-organised 2-day Conference, The Progressive Genealogy: Art & Culture in Modern India. A Columbia University-Asia Society collaboration, with Professor Vishakha Desai & Professor Gauri Viswanathan (Columbia, New York). The event explored Indian modernism in art, science, literature and film. The Keynote Lecture delivered by Homi K. Bhabha.
Co-organised 2-day Conference, The Art of Independence: Visions of the Past & Future in India & Pakistan. An Oxford-Courtauld collaboration with Professor Deborah Swallow (Courtauld), Professor Faisal Devji and Dr Mallica Kundera Landrus (Oxford University).
Personal podcast (embedded above)
- Co-organised 2-day Conference that accompanied The Fabric of India exhibition at the V & A Museum. On 7 November 2015, The Politics of Craft at the Courtauld, discussed the intersection of craft and politics in India. (Nov 2015). Read review here
- One of two Principal Resources for the 3-day Conference, Deconstructing Asian Art, coinciding with Art Stage Singapore 2013. Including academics, curators, private museum-owners and artists, it won a prize as the highest rated WPO-YPO event to take place in Asia. (Jan 2013)
Brown Britain: ‘Indian’ Art, Imperial Encounters & Diasporic Dreaming was a Public Lecture, organised as part of Jnanapravaha Mumbai’s Indian Aesthetics Diploma Programme. This talk investigated ideas of Britishness, Brown-ness and colonial identity in the contemporary British art-world, focusing on recent curatorial projects.
22 April 2023
Presentation, Mothers & Lovers: Desire, Possession and Nation in South Asian art, in “Woman, Art, Nation: Partition in South Asian Art”. Speakers included artist, curator and pedagogue Salima Hashmi (speaking on the work of Zubeida Agha) and the event was chaired and presented by US-based curator Siddhartha Shah. Digital Programme in collaboration with Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, USA.
18 August 2022
A snippet of Zehra Jumabhoy’s lecture Heights & Hubris?: Scaling Mountains and Macho-Nationalism for the Aberystwyth Art History Research Seminar Series for Decolonial and Transnational Approaches to Art History and Visual Culture in 2022.This section of the lecture relates to Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, Swansea, and the research for Art & Industry in India and Wales, 2022. For more information about the Aberystwyth Art History Research Seminar Series see here.
16 March 2022
Zehra Jumabhoy and Abhay Sardesai, Editor of ART India magazine, in conversation for Art India Education, Episode 3, The Many Faces of the Modern.
14 June 2022
Curatorial Talk for the exhibition, Art & Industry: Stories from South Wales (7 April – 11 July 2022). Drawing predominantly from the permanent art collection of the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery as well as archival material from Swansea Council’s West Glamorgan Archive Service and Swansea Museum, the exhibition was one of the first to examine the region’s art and industrial heritage through the ‘big’ names of Welsh art history.
9 April 2022
Presentation, Splitting the Difference, in “Drawing the Line, Connecting the Circle: Partition in South Asian Art” for Kalapriya Center for Indian Performing Arts, Chicago. Speakers included Siddhartha Shah, Guneet Singh Bhalla (founder of The 1947 Partition Archive) and Kalapriya Foundation’s President, Mridu D. Sekhar. Digital Programme in collaboration with and Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, USA.
15 August 2021
Lecture on Brangwyn and the ‘British Empire’ Panels for Workshop 2, “What stories of British art travel?”, of Curating Nation Series, co-convened by the Black British Art Research Group (BAN) & UAL Decolonising Arts Institute. This series of workshops was developed by the British Art Network’s Black British Art Research Group led by Alice Correia, Elizabeth Robles and Marlene Smith. This lecture on Frank Brangwyn’s murals at Swansea’s Guildhall involved a research collaboration with the Glynn Vivian Art Gallery, including Katy Freer and Ellie Dawkins, as well as archival assistance from The Courtauld’s Witt and Conway Photographic Libraries, access to which was facilitated by archivist Tom Bilson. The research for this lecture is part of the Imperial Subjects: (Post)Colonial Conversations between South Asia and Britain curatorial project currently underway at the Glynn Vivian, supported by the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, with a view to decolonising its collection.
28 April 2021
Lectures for “Partition’s Legacy: South Asian Art on the Line” for South Asia Institute, Harvard University. Digital Programme in collaboration with Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, USA.
5 November 2020
Lectures for “Mind the Dash: The Modern/Contemporary & In-Between in Indian Art”
Zoom Talk Series with art historians Puja Vaish & Dr Siddhartha Shah.
In collaboration with Jehangir Nicholson Art Foundation, Mumbai, India & Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts, USA.
Mind the Dash 1 video: The Modern in the Contemporary Space | 11th September
Mind the Dash 2 video: Wo/Man & Myth | 18th September
Mind the Dash 3 video: Collectives, Composites & Collaboration | 25th September
11,18, 25 September 2020
Lecture on “Art in Bombay, Bengal and Baroda” at Singapore Management University, Singapore
20 January 2019
Curatorial Lecture on “Midnight & The Moderns” at Asia Society, New York. Curatorial Lecture for The Progressive Revolution.
17 September 2018
- Lecture on “Bling, Batik and Blackness: Inauthentic Selves in ‘British’ Art” at Dr Matt Lodder’s SPAH Seminar Series, Essex University, Essex (5 December 2019).
- Lecture on “Art & Politics: Religious Pasts in Contemporary South Asian Art” at John Cabot University, Rome (17 April 2019).
- Lecture on “A Place for People: Secular Nationalism in Modern and Contemporary Indian Art”, at Silver Centre, New York University, New York (23 October 2018).
Moderated Self & Space: South Asian Diasporic Practices, Part 1 of a 3-part ZOOM collaboration between LASALLE College of the Arts’ MA in “Asian Art Histories” and the London School of Economics, London. The inter-disciplinary Panel included curator Sandhini Poddar, who spoke on the fragile prints and sculptures of the late Indian artist Zarina Hashmi as well as Venka Purushothaman (Provost at LASSALLE, with a specialism in cross-cultural creativity in South & South East Asia) and Sean McLoughlin (Professor of the Anthropology of Islam, Muslim Diasporas, at the University of Leeds). The Discussion was Chaired by: Nilanjan Sarkar, Deputy Director of LSE’s South Asia Centre.
11 November 2021
Moderated the annual ZOOM Forum History, Truth, Memory: Trauma in Asian Contemporary Art for LASALLE College of the Arts’ MA in “Asian Art Histories”. This symposium explored memory, trauma and the politics of the past in Asian contemporary art. It investigated the legacies of violence in the region, probing its continued, if repressed, imprint on Asia’s socio-political landscape. If history is written by the victors, who speaks for history’s victims? Art historians Dr Wulan Dirgantoro and Dr Nayun Jang teamed up with acclaimed Indonesian artist FX Harsono to consider the politics of remembering from diverse regional vantage points.
21 September 2021
South Asia Institute at Cambridge Roundtable on “The Modern History of Art in India”. Chaired by Prof Sujit Sivasundaram, Director of SAI at Cambridge, panelists included Shruti Kapila, Christopher Pinney, Nicole-Ann Lobo and Zehra Jumabhoy.
9 June 2021
Asian Art in the 21st Century, for Singapore Art Week 2021. The panel was a collaboration between the Programme Directors of the MAs in Asian Art at Lasalle College of the Arts, Singapore (Jeffrey Say) & Sotheby’s Institute of Art, London (Dr Katie Hill) and advertised the digital Short Course on Asian Art, Curating the Contemporary in Asia: Regions, Tradition and the Now, for which I contributed the lecture Timely Traditions: South Asian Art Pasts & Presents.
12 February 2021
“The Progressive Artists’ Group: A New India”, Modernism & Group Dynamics Symposium, Lenbachhaus Museum, Munich, Germany.
Speaker at the Lahore Literary Festival, British Library, London
“Imagining the Mughals” with Dr Amin Jaffer, Dr Mehreen Chida-Razvi & Amphra Shemza
Speaker at the Lahore Literary Festival, Alhambra, Lahore
“Modern Pasts, Connected Futures” with Dr Samina Iqbal, Conor Macklin & Taimur Hassan
Invited to participate on a panel discussion, Old Wine in New Bottles: How to Look at Indian Modern Art, at TEFAF, New York.
Moderated and presented a paper at the panel discussion, Writing The Indian Modern, alongside Gayatri Sinha and Yashodhara Dalmia for the ART India-Asia Society programme, at Asia Society, New York.
Speaker at the Lahore Literary Festival, Asia Society, New York
“Lahore as Palimpsest” with Dr Vishakha Desai, Dr Mehreen Chida-Razvi & Shahzia Sikander
Invited to participate in the Showing, Telling, Seeing: Exhibiting South Asia 1900-Now conference, co-organised by Paul Mellon Center for Studies in British Art, Tate Modern and Art Asia Archive. I presented, “S/Tate Britain”, the paper was part of a Panel Discussion, “Writing About Exhibitions”.
Speaker at the Lahore Literary Festival, Alhambra, Lahore
“The Modern: Bombay to Karachi” with Salima Hashmi, Dr Samina Iqbal & Nour Aslam
Sarmaya Snippet on Indian Modernist M.F.Husain’s famous painting Man (1951). Sarmaya India is an online museum, which invited international art historians, specialising in South Asian art, to make a video of an artwork or artefact of their choice during COVID19.