IAAC Exhibition of Contemporary Indian Art of the Diaspora 2014

Chandrika Marla
Chandrika Marla
Chandrika Marla

My work explores female identity and the place of women in society. I am inspired by women, their relationships with others, and with their own selves. I was a fashion designer for many years and as an artist I still express my ideas through depictions of the female torso. The torso itself is suggestive of the fragmented lives that women lead despite their desire to have it all.

In each painting, I build multiple layers of paint - scraping, scratching and reapplying to resolve the negative space that surrounds my protagonists. The lines are blurred, and I sometimes add paper or fabric to help resolve the shapes. I have always been drawn to Matisse, who said, “What interested me in painting was a clarification of my ideas.”


  • B.A. (Honors) English Literature / Delhi University / 1988
  • Fashion Design Diploma / National Institute of Fashion Technology, New Delhi / 1989 – 1991

  • ‘I AMerican’ - group show, Water Street Studios / Batavia, Illinois / 2014
  • ‘Equilibrium’ - juried show organized by Women's Caucus For Art / Woman Made Gallery / Chicago, Illinois           2014
  • United Art Fair - Pragati Maidan / New Delhi / 2013
  • ‘Dialogue Chicago: Taking Chances’ - group show, Noyes Cultural Center / Evanston, Illinois / 2013
  • ‘Alter Ego’ - solo show, Beverly Arts Center / Chicago / 2013
  • ‘Voices and Visions: Standing on the Bridge between Health and Disease’ - group show, The Art Center /              Highland Park, Illinois / 2012
  • ‘From Chicago To Lahore: A Cultural Nexus - group show, Chicago Cultural Center / Chicago / 2012
  • ‘Social Skin’ - solo show, Mars Gallery / Chicago / 2012
  • ‘Moving Towards Meaning’ - a dance performance by famed bharatnatyam dancer Rama Vaidyanathan, who        interpreted paintings from the TALK series. Skokie Public Library / Illinois / 2011.
  • ‘She’ - group show, Black Cloud Gallery / Chicago / 2011
  • ‘Abstract World’ - group show, Art Junction / New Delhi / 2011
  • ‘Revelations’ - solo show, Boocoo Cultural Center / Evanston, Illinois / 2010
  • 12th Annual Chicago Art Open - River East Art Center / Chicago, Illinois / 2010

    The Chicago Weekly, February 2013
    Urban Confustions, Volume 2, Summer 2012
    Art & Deal Magazine, Feb-March 2012
    Courageous Creativity, February 2012
    India Tribune, December 2011
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