Bose Krishnamachari





Bose Krishnamachari obtained his BFA in Painting from Sir.J.J.School of Art in Mumbai and MFA from the Goldsmiths College, London.Well known for his various experimental works, Bose initially worked on abstracts and later turned towards more conceptual ways of expressing himself including experimentation with second hand books. During the mid nineties he turned towards making portraits of internationally acclaimed artists to prove that painting as a traditional medium was not dead while also trying to engage him self with museum discourse by creating paintings and curating shows.He ‘de-curated’ himself and then went on to curate several path-breaking shows including ‘Bombay Boys’, ‘Double-Enders’, ‘KAAM’, ‘Maarkers’ and ‘Soft Spoken’.Bose also curated the India Pavilion at Arco 09, Madrid. Bose Krishnamachari has participated in several international shows and camps and his work can be seen in major collections in India and abroad.

“Krishnamachari was born in Kerala, a place which has since 1947 espoused a humanitarian Marxism agenda that fights against the status of disempowerment by recognizing people of all castes, classes, religions, ethnicities, and gender.  Kerala has also implemented a strategic educational policy that has gone beyond the normalized frame of Indian national strategies of positive discrimination. Through his artwork, Krishnamachari employs this idea of reform and of the state government’s mission to work towards the empowerment of these victims. Other works in Ghost include the 108 photographs of like minded individuals whose partial participation in the artist’s life forms a network of friends and loved ones. In highlighting these specters of his world, Krishnamachari attempts to keep alive the memory of his encounters, and however unsettling they may be, they remain placed, rather then displaced, as part of his ongoing, living experience.

Krishnamachari’s works are complex, major, even dramatic, encounters of unsettled reconsiderations by the opponents of the middle class. These works carry with them a panoramic reading beyond the displaced gaze that usually forbids further consideration and personalization of the mass of others. Krishnamachari constructs memorable works concerning the level of production of meaning and how meaning straddles over memory and recollection. In evaluating the others amongst us and in employing the other as a subject constantly bounded by our own fixity, Krishnamachari unabatedly exposes the gradual sedimentation of class and wealth.  The pain of our looking at those whom are economically less fortunate and who are restrained in menial subservience through the use of severe threats is a bald reminder of how power survives within our homes, our offices, our cities, our countries, and within us, as memory and as process.” – Shaheen Merali

“This remarkable quality of being simultaneously a prodigious producer of work, while also being an intrepid collector of information about fellow-producers (or might one say “whole-time workers”) and a genuine “connector” of people, patrons and projects makes Bose in 2008 an obsessive veritable one-man army with sophisticated systems of communication and the ability to detect a range of frequencies by always keeping an ear to the ground as it were. Bose plays the role of a “connector” in a manner that remains unprecedented and as yet not outdone in the world of contemporary art in the India of today. Bose’s is a commemoration of living artists, and this aspect of the De-Curating  enterprise, along with his other curatorial ventures over the past decade, reflect the pathology of an artist who is hard-wired to record, reflect, memorialize (and perhaps flatten in the process), the current condition of contemporary society and its art practices.

Bose is wholly conscious of the significance of history (both personal and socio-political) in a serious and considered set of positions that any artist is compelled to adopt in order to retain an elastic, charged space of praxis within the contemporary moment. In the tiffin-carrier works, as in the museum project, Bose retains this self-consciousness and highlights it. I use another quote from the catalogue for the show De-Curating (which required the artists to provide a written statement, perhaps asking them about the function of memory) to emphasize that the self-consciousness one encounters continually in Bose’s work is not by any means, exclusive to him.” – Radhika Desai  

The artist lives and works in Mumbai



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