Pakistani American artist Shahzia Sikander (RISD MFA 1995, Painting and Printmaking) is internationally celebrated for bringing painting traditions from South and Central Asia into dialogue with contemporary art practice. This exhibition tracks the first 15 years of this artistic journey, from her groundbreaking deconstruction of illustrated manuscript painting in Pakistan to the development of a new personal vocabulary at RISD, expanded explorations around identity as a Core Fellow at the Glassell School of Art at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, and her global outlook during her first years in New York. During this period, Sikander richly interrogated gender, sexuality, race, class, and history, creating open-ended narratives that have sustained her work as one of the most significant artists working today.
Shahzia Sikander: Extraordinary Realities is made possible by grants from The National Endowment for the Arts, The Scintilla Foundation, and The Robert Lehman Foundation, Inc., with additional publication support from The Vikram and Geetanjali Kirloskar Visiting Scholar in Painting Endowed Fund at the Rhode Island School of Design and Furthermore: a program of the J. M. Kaplan Fund.
RISD Museum is supported by a grant from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts, through an appropriation by the Rhode Island General Assembly and a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, and with the generous partnership of the Rhode Island School of Design, its Board of Trustees, and Museum Governors.