Zarina Hashmi

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Zarina Hashmi

Zarina Hashmi’s characteristic ability to distil emotion down to its most essential and expressive forms, builds her personal vocabulary into a political statement. Born in Aligarh in 1937, much of her works are marked by the aftermath of Partition and the experience of exile. Having travelled the world and lived in many different cities, Hashmi began to incorporate maps in her works, which expanded to include the topographical details of cities whose histories have been torn due to political conflicts—Aligarh, New Delhi, New York, Baghdad, Kabul. Through a few lines, abstracted geometry, essential colours and evoking a language slowly dying: Urdu; she uses individual expression to capture collective experience.

Her preoccupation with architecture is a grasp of memory, isolation and nostalgia. Within these lines and colours, she reassembles her visions of her house in Aligarh and her childhood that was enriched with words and language. Rotation, Repetition, Mirroring, Layering and Weaving, forms the poetics of her attempted perfection of geometry in which is contained her internalised narratives of experience, of memory and of feeling.

Zarina has had a long career in which her work has been exhibited at Gallery Espace, New Delhi; Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris; Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York, Mills College Museum, Oakland, California; Alana Gallery, Oslo and in many other galleries all over the world. Her first retrospective exhibition was held in 2012 at The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles and then travelled to Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum in New York and the Art Institute of Chicago.

She was one of the represented artists in the 54th International Art Exhibition, Venice Biennale [2011]. Zarina’s work has been published in numerous books and catalogues including Expansion-Resonance published by Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris [2009]; Zarina: Weaving Memory by Bodhi Art, Mumbai [2007]; Counting 1977-2005 published by Bose Pacia, New York [2005].

Zarina is the recipient of several awards like the Residency Award at the New York University’s Asian/Pacific/American Institute and Artist in Residence at the University of Richmond, both in 2017. She also received the President’s Award for Printmaking, India in 1969. She has taught in several universities like the New York Feminist Art Institute, Cornel University and New York University.

The artist lives and works in New York.



Born in 1937, Aligarh, India

Lives and works in New York, USA



Atelier-17, Paris, France


Bachelor of Science (Honors), Aligarh Muslim University, Aligarh, India



Luhring Augustine, New York, NY (Forthcoming)

Weaving Darkness and Silence, Gallery Espace, New Delhi


Dark Roads, A/P/A Institute, New York University, New York


Life Lines, Jeanne Bucher Jaeger, Paris


Descending Darkness, Luhring Augustine, New York

Zarina: Folding House, Gallery Espace, New Delhi


Zarina: Paper Like Skin, The Art Institute of Chicago, New York

Zarina: Paper Like Skin, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York


Zarina: Paper Like Skin, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles


Zarina Hashmi: Recent Works, Gallery Espace, New Delhi

Noor: Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris

Zarina Hashmi: Anamnesis, 1970 – 1989, Lakeeren, The Contemporary Art Gallery, Mumbai


The Ten Thousand Things, Luhring Augustine, New York



Art and Space, Guggenheim Bilbao, Bilbao, Spain

Thirty Works for Thirty Years, Menil Collection, Houston

Summer of 2017, 1 x 1 Gallery, Dubai

Exhibition 1, Institute of Arab & Islamic Art, New York

PASSION DE L’ART, Jeanne Bucher Jaeger, Paris

On Line Dot, Japan Foundation, New Delhi

The Restless Earth, Fondazione Nicola Trussardi, La Triennale di Milano

Popcorn: design, art et cinema, Museé d’art moderne et contemporain de Saint Étienne

Métropole, Saint Étienne, Rhône-Alpes

Alchemy: Transformations in Gold, Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, Iowa.


Workshop and Legacy: Stanley William Hayter, Krishna Reddy, Zarina Hashmi, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

Dialogue VIII, Jeanne Bucher Jaeger, Paris

Getting Across: An Exhibition on Borders, Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan, New Delhi

Archaeology of the present, Museé d’art moderne et contemporain de Saint Étienne Métropole, Saint Étienne, Rhône-Alpes, France.

Le Contemporain dessiné. Parcours aux Decoratifs: Drawing Now Paris, Museé des Arts decoratifs, Paris

The Armory Show, Gallery Espace Booth, New York

The Journey is the Destination: The Artist’s Journey Between Then and Now, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, Mumbai

Built/World, SCAD Museum of Art, Savannah, Georgia.

We Refugees – Of the Right to Have Rights, Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe, Germany.


Quinte-Essence, Jeanne Bucher Jaeger, Paris

Apparitions: Frottages and Rubbings from 1860 to Now, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles.

Formal Relations, Taymour Grahne Gallery, New York

Drawing Biennial, Drawing Room, Tannery Arts, London

The Armory Show, Gallery Espace Booth, New York

Carte Blanche to Luhring Augustine, Galerie Patrick Seguin, Pari, France

Constructs | Constructions, Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, New Delhi

Neither Here, Nor There: Borders and Mobility in Contemporary Art, Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum, St. Louis

Organic Sculpture, Alison Jacques Gallery, London

Experiments with Truth: Gandhi and Images of Nonviolence, Musée international de la Croix-Rouge et du Croissant-Rouge (International Red Cross and Crescent Museum), Geneva

Possibilities of Paper: Select Works by Lucas Artists Fellows (2005-2015), Montalvo Art Center, Saratoga, CA.


Dialogue VI, Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris

Drawing 2014: Seven Decades of Indian Drawing, Gallery Espace, New Delhi

Art and Truth: Gandhi and Images of Nonviolence, Menil Collection, Houston

Artevida, Casa França-Brasil, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Beyond Modern: Nineteenth-Century French Drawings from the Morgan Library and Museum and the Menil Collection, Menil Collection, Houston

Zameen, Art District XIII. Lado Sarai, New Delhi

Trajectories: 19th – 21st century printmaking in Pakistan & India, Sharjah Art Museum, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates

Advance through Retreat, Rockbund Art Museum, Shanghai

SABZA O GUL, Chawkandi Art Gallery, Karachi


Matter and Memory, Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris

Sculptrices, Villa Datris, L’Isle-Sur-La-Sorgue, France

Beyond Belief: 100 Years of the Spiritual in Modern Art, Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco

Black Sun, Devi Foundation, Delhi

Companionable Silences, Palais de Tokyo, Paris

Dialogue V, Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris


Women In-Between: Asian Women Artists 1984-2012

Fukuoka Asian Art Museum

Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum

Tochigi Prefectural of Fine Arts

Mie Prefectural Art Museum

Lines of Control, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of art, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY


Dialogue IV, Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris

Dialogue III, Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris

Contemporary Galleries:1980 – Now, Museum of Modern Art, New York

Homespun: Devi Art Foundation, New Delhi

Everyone Agrees: It’s about to Explode, India Pavilion, 54th La Biennale di Venezia, Venice

Roots in the Air, Branches Below: Modern and Contemporary Art from India,

San Jose Museum of Art, San Jose, California

Drawn from Life; A Green Cardamom Project, Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Cumbria, England

Untitled (12th Istanbul Biennial), Istanbul

Si l’espace n’était qu’une dimension intérieure [What if space was only an inside notion], Abbaye St André, Centre d’art contemporain, Meymac, France


Mind and Matter: Alternative Abstractions, 1940s to Now, The Museum of Modern Art, New York

Luhring Augustine 25 Years, Luhring Augustine, New York

Orientations: Trajectories in Indian art, Foundation “De 11 Lijnen,” Oudenburg, Belgium

A Collection, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai

Hand, Voice, Vision: Artists’ Books from Women’s Studio Workshop,

The Groiler Club, New York

Dialogue I, Galerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris


The Third Mind: American Artists Contemplate Asia 1860-1989, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York


Expansions-Résonance, Gallerie Jaeger Bucher, Paris

India Moderna: IVAM Institut Valencia d’Art Moderne, Valencia, Spain

A Year in Exhibitions / Annual Report: The 7th Gwangju Biennale, Gwangju, South Korea

Gouge: The Modern Woodcut, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, California

Frontlines: Notations from the Contemporary Indian Urban, Bodhi Berlin, Berlin

Fault Lines, Bodhi Art, Mumbai

Drawn From Life: Drawing Space, Green Cardamom, London

Everywhere is War (And Rumours of War), Bodhi Art, Mumbai

Fluid Structures, Vadehra Gallery, New Delhi


Khullar, Sonal. Worldly Affiliations: Artistic Practice, National Identity, and Modernism in India, 1930–1990, 2–3, 5. Oakland: University of California Press, 2015.

Nasreen Mohamedi: Waiting Is a Part of Intense Living, 21, 193, 204, 275–76, 278. Madrid: Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, 2015.

Ritterskamp, Julia, and Gérard A. Goodrow. Passages: Indian Art Today, 177, 180–81, 184–87. Cologne, Germany: DAAB Media, 2014.

Stout, Katharine. “Abstraction.” Contemporary Drawing from the 1960s to Now, 33. London: Tate Enterprises, 2014.

Between the Lines: A Coloring Book of Drawings by Contemporary Artists. Vol. 4, 104–5. New York: RxArt, 2013.

Milford-Lutzker, Mary-Ann. “The Poetry of Zarina‘s Art.” Indian Painting—Essays in Honour of B. N. Goswamy, 411–21. Nashik, India: Mapin Publishing, 2013.

Mufti, Aamir R. ”Zarina Hashmi and the Arts of Dispossession”. Lines of Control: Partition as a Productive Space, 87–99, 170–71. Ithaca, NY: Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art, Cornell University; London: Green Cardamom, 2012.

Pohl, Frances K., Framing America: A Social History of American Art (3rd Edition), Thames & Hudson, London, 2012 (image used on front cover)

Brown, Rebecca and Hutton, Deborah, ed. A Companion to Asian Art and Architecture. Wiley-Blackwell Publishing, 2011 (discussed)

Mathur, Saloni, Ed. The Migrant’s Time: Rethinking Art History and Diaspora, Clark Studies in the Visual Arts, 2011.

Kazmi, Nuzhat, Islamic Art: The Past and Modern, Roli Books, New Delhi, 2009.

O’Reilly, Andrea, Ed. Mothering, Race, Ethnicity, Culture and Class, Journal of the Association for Research on Mothering, Summer/Fall 2007, Volume 9, Number 2. (Images of artwork featured alongside Meena Alexander’s poetry)

Appadurai, Arjun, Fear of Small Numbers: An Essay on the Geography of Anger, Duke University Press, Durham and London, 2006

Machida, Margo, Unsettled Visions: Contemporary Asian American artists and the social imaginary. Duke University Press, Durham and London, 2008.

Mufti, Aamir R, Enlightenment in the Colony. Priceton University Press, Princeton and Oxford. 2007.

Sen, Geeti and Kaushal, Molly, Ed. Journeys: Heroes, Pilgrims, Explorers, India International Center/ Penguin Viking/ India. 2004.

Kim, Elaine H, Machida, Margo and Mizota, Sharon, Ed. Fresh Talk / Daring Gazes: Conversations on Asian American Art, University of California Press. 2005.

Shohat, Ella and Fusco, Coco Ed. Talking Visions: Multicultural Feminism in the Age of Globalization, MIT Press and The New Museum (photograph), 2001.

Farris, Phoebe, Ed. Women Artists Of Color: A Bio-Critical Source book

20th Century Artists in the Americas, (Biographical Essay by Mary-Ann Milford-Lutzker), Greenwood Press. 1999

Krishnan, S.A., Ed. Artists’ Directory 1981. Published by Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi, India. 1981.



Artist in Residence at New York University’s Asian/Pacific/American Institute


Artist in Residence at University of Richmond, Richmond, VA


President’s Award for Printmaking, India

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