Blind spot: (noun) an area in which a person lacks understanding or impartiality.
As a person who transgresses fixed notions of race, nation, citizenry, class, gender and sexuality, I have always felt invisible, in India, the country of my birth and ancestry, as well as the United States, the country I have adopted as home. Who am I if I don’t conform? I answer that question by writing myself into existence. The blind spot series is an ongoing series of works on archival sketchpad paper in which I directly observe my own states of consciousness/mind. I morph processes of automatic writing with visual script, landscapes, abstraction and symbolism to exteriorize the intangible space of unconscious desires, anxieties, daydreams and images.The circle in this series references the eye, the instrument which allows us to both see and be seen, but it also symbolizes my psyche. Society chooses to be blind, and the blind lead the blind into the eternal abyss. Me, I exist in the bliss of the unknown.
Sharmistha Ray is an artist, writer, educator and arts administrator based in Brooklyn, New York. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and art fairs in New York, Singapore, Mumbai and New Delhi. Solo exhibitions include “we are all islands” (Nine Fish, Mumbai & Mill Hall, Kochi, India), “Reflections & Transformations” (Aicon, New York) and “hidden geographies” (Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke, Mumbai). She is the recipient of notable awards including a TED Fellowship (2009), Montblanc Young Artist Worldwide Patronage Award (2012), Joan Mitchell MFA Grant (2004) and was nominated for the Civitella Ranieri Fellowship for Visual Art (2014). Her writings have been published in various online and print magazines including Art Asia Pacific, Hyperallergic, Artcritical, Art India and the India editions of Vogue and Elle. Sharmistha has spoken on art-based panels including Review Panel at the Brooklyn Public Library, NY; at the Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan, Mumbai; and CSMVS (Prince of Wales Museum), Mumbai. She was formerly Managing Director at Bodhi Art (Mumbai, New Delhi, New York, Berlin & Singapore), the inaugural Sales Director – Asia at Hauser & Wirth, and VIP Representative – India at Art Basel. She received a BA (Art) from Williams College and a dual degree MS (History of Art & Design) and MFA (Painting) from Pratt Institute, with honors. She is currently Part-Time Faculty in the Department of Art, Media and Technology at Parsons School of Design, The New School.