4th Bose Pacia Prize

Group Exhibition
November 20, 2003 - January 3, 2004
New York

Download Press Release (PDF 33 K)

November 2003 New York – Bose Pacia is pleased to announce the winner of the 2003 Bose Pacia Prize for Contemporary Art, Sunoj D. The Bose Pacia Prize for Contemporary Art was established in 1997 to promote emerging artists from South Asia who demonstrate exceptional talent in the field of contemporary visual art. The competition for the 2003 prize was judged by Tony Korner, publisher of Artforum magazine and Deepak Ananth, an independent curator and art historian based in Paris. This year, the call for entries drew a record number of highly qualified applicants. Along with selecting the winner, the judges named two runners up, Justin Ponmany and Sumitro Basak.

The work of all three artists will be displayed in an exhibition at Bose Pacia Gallery from November 20, 2003 through January 3, 2004. The gallery is located at 508 West 26th Street on the 11th Floor, in the Chelsea district of New York City. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 12 to 6 pm and by appointment. There will be an opening reception on Thursday, November 20th from 6 to 8pm. The public is invited.

Born in Kerala, Sunoj D just recently graduated from Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath in Bangalore at the age of twenty-four, receiving his BFA in Painting. He has exhibited widely in the south of India, and this is his first exhibition abroad. Drawing upon photographs from his past, Sunoj examines questions of identity and the nature of personal evolution in the context of societal obligations. Often obscuring faces with painted words or numbers, he plays with ideas of individuality vs. anonymity and the reduction of representation to a mere collective of labels. He turns repeatedly to the image of a grade school classroom portrait to explore the loss that inevitably accompanies growth – loss of memory, loss of contact, loss of innocence.

Another native of Kerala, twenty-nine year old Justin Ponmany earned his BFA in Painting from Sir J.J. School of Art. Ponmany currently lives and works in Mumbai and has exhibited extensively throughout India. He finds inspiration for his canvases in the turmoil of the Mumbai metropolis, in particular, the dynamic nature of the urban landscape. To remain grounded in a city defined by flux implies constant reinvention and adaptation of self. Using media ranging from holograms to smoke to traditional acrylic paint and charcoal, Ponmany captures the changing ethos of his home city and the struggles of his fellow citizens through a wholly contemporary aesthetic.

Sumitro Basak of Kolkata received both his BFA and MFA from Kala Bhavana, Visva Bharati University at Santiniketan. Blending folklore and mythology with pop culture and Bollywood, Basak cleverly combines the kitsch and the sacred to reflect on the paradoxes of contemporary Indian life. His colorful works on paper are created primarily with gouache and collage and reflect his light-hearted approach to what he terms "the modern myth." He has exhibited mostly in Kolkata and this is his first show in the States. Basak is twenty-seven years old.