REDDY, Ravinder G, Woman with lotus flower
Ravinder Reddy draws equally on pre-modern sculpture, Buddhist and Hindu iconography, and the rich popular culture and kitsch of South Asia. Fashioned from fibreglass covered with gold leaf, the larger-than-life Woman with lotus flower stands on the floating lotus blossom of Buddhist tradition, assuming part of the tribhanga stance, with one knee bent, found in bronze sculptures of Hindu goddesses and magical spirits. The figure’s proportions are explicitly ample, its nakedness confronting, aligning long histories of nudity as a subject in sculpture with more recent depictions of women in cinema, advertising and erotica. Significantly, the work was created during an upsurge in religious fundamentalist rhetoric in Indian politics, with its outsized emphasis on the public representation of women and deities alike. Emerging from considerations of hybridity and fetish, the work touches on the persistence of the past within the waves of modernisation and shifting moral frameworks in contemporary India.
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