Nepal’s leading conceptual performance artist, Ashmina pushes the definitions of the post-modern in contemporary Nepali art—her in-your-face installation and performances constantly interrogates, challenge, and confront cultural stereotypes. Her art is an expression of her commitment as a social activist, as “artivism” where she locates herself self-consciously as a Third World artist, influenced to a certain degree by the cultural “otherness” that is embedded in her works. Her subjects are located within such cultural specificity of South Asia, so subversion of cultural stereotypes and politics of gender are critical expressions of her process-driven work. Using in a wide range of media—installation, performance, painting, printmaking, sound, and video—Ashmina’s works consistently engages with issues of sexuality, desire, her subversive subjects and presentations are aimed towards a viewing experience that is not entirely aesthetic but meant to evoke a distinct sense of unease as a reaction to such represented bodies. Her recent experimentation as political activism critically interrogate the issues of migration, dislocation, and cultural memory.
Dr. Dina Bangdel
Associate Professor of Art History
Virginia Commonwealth University
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