Suchitra Mattai | 2023 Untitled Art Miami | Booth C25
“love, labor and the pursuit of happiness”
Suchitra Mattai is a multi-disciplinary artist of Indo-Caribbean descent. She uses a mixed-media approach to explore how memory and myth allow us to unravel and re-imagine historical narratives.
This year, Untitled Art's exhibiting theme includes an emphasis on gender equality in the arts and drawing attention to presentations that promote inclusivity and diversity. Programming emphasizes expertise and experiences that illuminate underrepresented narratives and voices.
Suchitra Mattai’s solo at K Contemporary's Untitled Art booth provides a microcosm for her material and conceptual exploration of women’s labor. Her primary pursuit is to give voice to women of the past, present, and future. The work focuses on the experiences of women from the Indo-Caribbean diaspora and beyond by employing practices and materials associated with the domestic sphere such as embroidery, weaving, and fiber.
Suchitra gives agency to the heroines that populate her work by privileging oral traditions, folklore, myth, and memory. Suchitra re-imagines vintage and found materials that have a rich past as a way of creating a dialogue with the original makers and the time periods in which they were once cherished as well as as a means of navigating her own personal narrative. She often uses vintage saris and other clothing as a way of connecting women of the wider South Asian diaspora. Thinking about colonization in Guyana and the rest of the Caribbean is a way of tracing her family’s history in Guyana and India and of fostering discussion around contemporary issues surrounding gender and labor.
Suchitra’s process is one of reconciliation. Combining, re-contextualizing, and reconfiguring disparate materials is a way of making sense of the world around her and the multiple cultural spheres that she inhabits as an Indo-Caribbean American. She creates two-dimensional works, installations, and sculptures that allow disparate found objects and hand-made objects to cohabitate, reflecting the multi-dimensionality of culture and community.
Suchitra received an MFA in painting and drawing and an MA in South Asian art from the University of Pennsylvania. Her recent projects include a commission for the Sharjah Biennial 14, “State of the Art 2020” at Crystal Bridges Museum, a commission for MCA Denver, a Denver Art Museum and the Biennial of the Americas jointly sponsored installation, and solo exhibitions at the Boise Art Museum, group exhibitions at the Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto), MCA Chicago (Chicago), and the John Michael Kohler Arts Center (Wisconsin). Her work is in private and institutional collections that include Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, the Shah Grag Collection, Jorge Perez, the Denver Art Museum, the Tampa Museum of Art, the University of Michigan Museum of Art, the Kiran Nader Museum of Art, Delhi, India, the TiA Collection (Santa Fe), and the Fidelity Investments Art Collection.