Seattle Asian Art Museum
1400 East Prospect Street, Capitol Hill, Seattle

  • Screen Shot 2022 03 30 at 12 59 09 AM

Spanning a period from the third millennium BCE to today, the works in this exhibition offer metamorphic and compelling images of the human body. Most of the artists utilize female and feminized forms in a myriad of ways, including as a devotional object, as a mode of self-representation, and to question the safety of public spaces.

Devi, the great goddess who holds immeasurable sacredness and strength, is a typical and potent subject within the canon of South Asian art. In modern and contemporary art, South Asian-identified artists have reacted against traditional norms and challenged gender, national, and social stereotypes. Some have reoriented the exemplary and fierce model of the goddess. Others have attended to new subjects, selecting everyday townspeople—such as fisherwomen and local schoolgirls—to be the protagonists of their work.

Each of the artists here invest the human body with the power to question social, political, and normative fictions. By doing so, they invite you to explore the complexities of the human body: to contemplate and question which bodies are conferred with greater degrees of humanity and perhaps to imagine, with them, different ways to embody change.

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