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Emma Lalvani

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Artist Statement

In my practice this year on the Fine Art M.A. I have delved deep into a past
lived life in Bombay/Mumbai seeking interlinks from the streets of the
‘Maximum City’ back to my current place of birth and my roots. The ubiquitous Indian banyan tree is the metaphor for the roots and routes, which push-pull me back and forth.

Overprinting fine Indian muslin has been a revelatory experiment, as has
painting into monoprints in watercolour inks, or blingy Indian pigments on
long lengths of Fabriano paper followed by fast-paced gestural mark-making
with a swathe of a brushstroke or the indication of a line.

My methods are a response to the annual monsoon. A calling-back from over the seas - a season which evokes a renewal, a soaking, a cleansing, a backdrop of splodgy wateriness. Emerging from within my work are nuanced figurative elements from the city and from the myriad belief systems of India. Scaled up visuals include Hindu gods, Goan Madonnas, Buddhist statues and Moghul influences.

This represents my life pre-lockdown; an intermarriage of faiths and cultures; a dialogue between myself and the viewer, resolving issues of post colonialism and playing with dynamics of space, place, and form - and the intermingling of water spirits.

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