Bahl briefly studied at the College of Art, Delhi before her training
at the Rhode Island School of Design in 2003, where she did a BFA in Printmaking.
In 2002 Mekhala was part of a Study Abroad Program, Japan and the winter
session , The Rhode Island School of Design . In the same year Mekhala
was also at the Palazzo Cenci, Rhode Island School of Design, Rome, Italy
for a Painting and Art History Study Program and in 1999 she was at the
Pont Aven School of Art, Brittany, France for a Summer course; Printmaking
and Experimental Works on Paper.
Exhibitions: 2007 Anecdote, Galerie Romain Rolland, Alliance Francaise,
New Delhi;2006 [Drawings and Prints] , Triveni Gallery, New Delhi ;2003
Lucent, Benson Hall Gallery, Rhode Island, USA ;2002 Vaaz, Benson Hall
Gallery, Rhode Island, USA.
Exhibitions: 2007 Portfolio show at Southern Graphics Conference, Kansas
City, Missouri, USA ;2006 India on Canvas, Auction and Exhibition ;2006
Multiplicity and the Self,, Visual Arts Gallery, Delhi ;2005 Blur, Montecastello
Art Gallery, Montecastello, Italy ;2003 Arches Annual Print Exhibition,
A Juried exhibition at 808 Gallery, Boston University, Boston, Massachusetts,
USA ;2002 Roma, Palazzo Cenci, Rome, Italy ;2001 Print Matrix: Print Media
Exhibition, Fine Arts Gallery, Fairfax, Virginia, U.S.A.;1999 Scapes,
Gauguin Gallery, Pont Aven, Brittany, France.
WORKSHOP AND RESIDENCY:2006 Annual RPG art camp, hosted by Harsh Goenka
and Vikram Sethi, Marve, Mumbai ;2006 Learning Center, Art Instructor,
Kusumpur-pahari, New Delhi ;2005 Artist in Residence at International
School of Painting, Drawing and Sculpture, Montecastello, Umbria, Italy
;2002 Assistant Instructor, Monotype Printmaking,Printmaking Department,
The Rhode Island School of Design, U.S.A. ;1999 Atelier 2221, Intaglio,
Relief and Lithography Workshop by - master printmaker, Devraj Dakoji,
2003 Awarded Student of the Year, Printmaking,Rhode Island School of Design,
2002 G. W. Hodge Ritchie Award for Excellence in Printmaking, USA
has never restricted herself to single techniques or media. She has worked
with materials as diverse as glass, wood, silk, paper, plastic and quilting.
Her technical oeuvre extends from block -printing, etching and lithography,
to drawing, painting or simply marks scratched on to the matrix. Mekhala
creates endless possibilities; blurring and divesting watertight categories
of their legitimacy in her art making. The scale of her work too, ranges
from small intimate images to vast canvases, neither, adhering to a practiced
images read like journals- daily happenings, memories, recollections of
dreams find place in her art. Intuition navigates the direction of Mekhala's
hand as she scribbles, doodles and makes marks, creating layers both visual
and emotive. A reading of Mekhala's work raises essential questions about
the definitions that are accorded to categories such as 'Abstract', 'Representational'
or 'Non-representational' art. As viewers, we need to discard the insistent
need to read familiarity into an image. We are taught to assign meanings
to sounds, to visuals, turning each into a symbol with a fixed meaning,
recognising only that which can be optically verified, forgetting perhaps
to trust our mind's eye, our memory and instinct. Mekhala's works are
representational- they map the places, people and experiences that the
artist has encountered. She purges each of their recognizable forms, but
each mark and even the titles of her works are rooted in actuality.
Bahl lives and works in Gurgaon.