On Creation ● On Beauty & Violence ● On Connection
Shwarga Bhattacharjee is an artist based in North Philadelphia. Born in Dhaka, Bangladesh, Shwarga moved to the U.S. in 2014. He received an MFA from the Tyler School of Art and Architecture at Temple University and a BFA in drawing and painting from the Faculty of Fine Arts at Dhaka University. Shwarga’s work draws from the duality of experiences as an immigrant. His work references social historical and political events in the Americas and South Asia. Hakimah Abdul-Fattah interviewed Shwarga in late February 2022 as his first solo exhibition entitled Excavation Paths was wrapping up at Twelve Gates Arts in Philadelphia. The exhibition Shwarga Bhattacharjee: Excavation Paths was curated by Tausif Noor. In this episode we discuss Shwarga's creative process, chaos and beauty, the colonial history of South Asia and his friendship with Tausif.
About the Artist
Shwarga Bhattacharjee (he/him) is an artist based in North Philadelphia. His work has been exhibited in various venues in the U.S. and Bangladesh, including Vox Populi and Temple Contemporary in Philadelphia; the Jamaica Center for Arts and Learning in New York; and the Dhaka Art Summit, where he was selected as part of the nation’s Young Talent at the inaugural Summit in 2012. He is a 2021 recipient of the Peter Benoliel Fellowship at the Center for Emerging Visual Artists in Philadelphia, and has participated in residencies at the Chatauqua School of Art, the Britto Arts Foundation in Dhaka, the Jentel Artist Residency, and the New York Artists’ Equity Curatorial Residency. Bhattacharjee curated an exhibition at the Philadelphia exhibition space Little Berlin in 2018 as a Visiting Curator and worked as a children’s book illustrator with Room to Read, a leading non-profit organization that focuses on educating underprivileged children across Asia and Africa. (www.shwarga.com)
About the Host
Hakimah Abdul-Fattah (she/hers) is a graduate student in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania. She is a visual artist and researcher with a professional background in museums and arts organizations. She is interested broadly in the moments in which material objects are put to work in national projects of repair, specifically with respect to how they might address the historical injustices of new world slavery and colonization. Hakimah holds a BA in Anthropology and French from Bates College and a MA in Museum Anthropology from Columbia University.
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