The Anne Barrault Gallery is pleased to welcome Jagdeep Raina’s first solo exhibition in Paris.
This young Canadian artist will present a set of unpublished works, composed of embroideries and drawings.
The plurality of History is perhaps the main subject of Jagdeep Raina’works. His family, from the Kashmir region bordering the Punjab, emigrated to Canada in the sixties, because of the unstable political and community climate of the time, following the Partition of India and Pakistan in 1947. The departure of the British authorities from the region led to its violent division into two independent nation-States, along with huge displacements of people on both sides and beyond the new borders.
By his interest in various textile techniques (Kashmir embroidery, Punjab embroidery, shawl, phulkari, Jagdeep Raina reconnects and revives an ancestral heritage, nearing today disappearance. Besides, the techniques related to the use of textile have long been activities practiced by women, and they are still today very gendered. This reorganization of historical configurations does show his wish to question repressive orders, while revealing the decisional hierarchy at work with gender, class, caste, race, sexuality and geography. Therefore, Raina’s practice implies tradition and transgression in equal measure. In order to create his works, he draws his inspiration from historical or informal photographic sources he has found or made himself. With the fluid and malleable materials such as drawing, embroidered tapestry, writing, ceramics, animated videos, and lately a 35mm film, he uses reproduction and reappropriation strategies in order to disrupt the archives permanence. Raina questions the intimate relationships between personal archives and public archives, emphasizing what links us to History, so that we understand narratives that are beyond us.
For his first exhibition in France, Raina wishes to confront France with its orientalist and colonialist past. The Kashmir shawl, brought back from the Egyptian campaign by the French soldiers in 1798, becomes Josephine de Beauharnais’s favorite toilet requisite, then Marie-Louise of Austria’s, as well as Madame Rivière’s, whose portrait by Ingres in 1805 features one of these shawls in the foreground. The Kashmir shawl becomes a luxury item of clothing and is in fashion for the most part of the 19th century, until the trend decreases and leaves the workers of the region without resources. If Raina wants to refer to the violent modes of the exploitation and commercialization exerted by France at the time of the production of the fabrics of the day, he also sets up some kind of resistance. In a series of six drawings built up with a quilting technique, you can notice a Kashmiri woman going into a Kashmir textile store to have a hand-sewn, woven and embroidered coat fitted. She is seen posing while laughing warmly with the saleswomen. This scene does not depict a specific place or moment, but has rather an effect like a dream. This fantasy is powerful, since it makes an inversion by suggesting an alternative scenario in favor of those (men and women) who have been supervised, exploited and abused. Besides, the re-appropriation of the traditional Kashmiri garment as an item of costume and protection is part of this metaphorical reconquest of the territory, which is a recurring and moving theme in the artist’s work.
Exhibition from April 20 to June 03, 2023.
Ever since the start, the gallery anne barrault has devoted itself exceptionally to contemporary art with a focused commitment to the presentation of young artists.
It has presented many first solo exhibitions, such as those of Tiziana la Melia, Stéphanie Saadé, Guillaume Pinard or Jochen Gerner, along with established artists such as Daniel Spoerri or Roland Topor.
From its opening twenty years ago, galerie anne barrault has constantly built up new ties with different disciplines, as with Yona Friedman, the architect, who exhibited at the gallery, or the writer Pacôme Thiellement who curated a show and, more recently Marie Losier, the filmmaker, who had her very first gallery exhibition at galerie anne barrault in 2020.
In 2021 Anne Barrault once more highlighted a young talented artist, Neïla Czermak Ichti, with a solo show to present her works. In 2022, it was the turn of Liv Schulman and Rayane Mcirdi.
Many of the gallery’s artists have had their books published. Recently the fanzine Pleased to meet you dedicated its tenth edition to Marie Losier, and the artist Neïla Czermak Ichti published her first monograph in correspondance to her solo show with the gallery in 2021.
Every so often, the gallery invites an independent curator who proposes a singular exhibition : in 2017 Franck Balland curated an exhibition of Tiziana la Melia and curator Marie de Brugerolle presented a group show : Cassoni in 2022.
David B. • Gabriele Basilico • Katharina Bosse • Neïla Czermak Ichti • Julie Doucet • Dominique Figarella • Jochen Gerner • Killoffer • Tiziana La Melia • Marie Losier • Manuela Marques • Ramuntcho Matta • Rayane Mcirdi • Olivier Menanteau • Pierre Moignard • Guillaume Pinard • Vimala Pons • Tere Recarens • David Renaud • Stéphanie Saadé • Liv Schulman • Daniel Spoerri • Roland Topor • Alun Williams