Dallas Contemporary presents Shilpa Gupta: "For, In Your Tongue, I Cannot Fit - 100 Jailed Poets" opening day
Organized by Emily Edwards, Dallas Contemporary’s Assistant Curator, Mumbai-based artist Shilpa Gupta’s presentation will showcase her multi-channel immersive sound installation, "For, In Your Tongue, I Cannot Fit: 100 Jailed Poets."
With this work, Gupta gives the microphone back to those who were rendered voiceless. The physical installation hosts an audio loop which shares the words of poets who have been subjected to imprisonment, detainment and execution. The reading of poem fragments alternates amongst the microphone speakers creating an immersive experience. The poems range from those written in the eighth century to present day, with authors spanning the globe. Read in English, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Azeri and Hindu, amongst others, the piece reflects language as a tool of power that different states continually have tried to control.
For over two decades, Gupta has explored how best to incorporate elements of sound into her work. Gupta’s background in computer science, design and new technology shaped her interest in expanding the idea of what art can be. One of her signature motifs is a reverse-wired microphone that operates as a speaker. First utilized in her 2008 work "In Our Times," this mechanism has been repeatedly incorporated into Gupta’s practice throughout her career. Her sound installations require viewers to actively listen, allowing the artist to engage more directly with her audience about charged topics such as colonialism, borders, diversity, inclusion and power of speech.
The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication featuring poems from the installation and illustrations by the artist.
Following the opening day, the exhibit will be on display through February 13.