Seeing the Elephant Past
The Indian story of the blind men and the elephant tells of earnest, observant individuals trying to describe something. Each of them probes one part of an elephant and gives his description. The result is a wildly diverse range of properties from the ear to the legs, tail, and tusk. All are true yet they hardly coalesce and often conflict.
This is an apt parable for those documenting and drawing inspiration from India, a country that has long been a subject for artists, writers, and scholars fascinated by the nation's colors, complexities, and contrasts. It is ancient and modern, agrarian and industrial, connected and self-contained.
Seeing the Elephant features international contemporary artists whose work explores a wide range of topics facing India today. The structure of the exhibition is to approach the region from within and without, from positions of intimacy and expertise as well as from a more aesthetic distance.
This exhibition was curated by Lisa Tung with Darci Hanna and Curatorial Fellows Zoe Silverman and Madison Treece, and Curatorial Intern Emily Watlington.