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The Arts Intel Report

A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler
A Cultural Compass
For the World Traveler

Shilpa Gupta

Oct 7, 2021 – Feb 6, 2022
Barbican Centre Silk Street, London EC2Y 8DS

A Bombay native who is based in Mumbai, the artist Shilpa Gupta has long created installations that address South Asian political issues such as classification, censorship, and security. In 2007, for instance, she conducted an experiment on fear, asking viewers to exit the gallery with a bag imprinted “there is no explosive here.” In this show, she will expand on the installation For, In Your Tongue, I Cannot Fit, ongoing since 2017. One hundred microphones hang from the ceiling, suspended over 100 menacing metal spikes, each spike holding a page of verse written by a poet who is or was once incarcerated. These fragments come from 8th- to 21st-century poems, and speak of voices silenced. —E.C.

Shilpa Gupta, “For, In Your Tongue, I Cannot Fit,” 2017. Photo: Pat Verbruggen.