Skip to main content
Monday
Closed
Tuesday
Closed
Wednesday
Closed
Thursday
Closed
Friday
Closed
Saturday
Closed
Sunday
Closed

From the MAO archive: Mrinalini Mukherjee in 1994

Posted

For our seventh post in the #MAOarchive series we take you back to 1994 when Indian sculptor Mrinalini Mukherjee’s larger than life fibre sculptures towered over visitors to the gallery.

Mrinalini Mukherjee. Installation view at Modern Art Oxford, 1994. © Modern Art Oxford

After studying figurative painting, Mukherjee quickly turned to sculpture. She had been inspired by the teaching of artist K.G. Subramanyan who championed Indian craft traditions, and was also drawn to the freedom of pursuing a medium she was not formally trained in.

Mrinalini Mukherjee. Installation view at Modern Art Oxford, 1994. © Modern Art Oxford

Mukherjee rejected conventional materials and techniques associated with studio practice. Weaving and knotting dyed hemp rope, she created complex organic shapes and folds that evoke plants and the human body on a mythical scale.

Mrinalini Mukherjee. Installation view at Modern Art Oxford, 1994. © Modern Art Oxford

Her fibre sculptures were the result of a painstaking process, which meant she could produce only one or two a year.

Mrinalini Mukherjee. Installation view at Modern Art Oxford, 1994. © Modern Art Oxford

Mukherjee remained experimental and open-minded throughout her life. She saw artistic possibility in all materials, particularly those traditionally associated with crafts, including wax and clay. As she said: “Till I have the opportunity to do it, and I have a new idea, I’ll do it.” 

Follow #MAOarchive on Instagram to discover more memories from the gallery’s history.