Instagram Mailing List

Join our mailing list


Rajkamal Kahlon: Imports and Exports
May 16 - June 13, 2004
Ratio 3, 903 Guerrero, San Francisco, CA 94110

Opening reception: May 16, 2004, 12-5pm.

Ratio 3 inaugurates its San Francisco space with Mark Shetabi: The Anxious Journey, on view from February 15 to March 28, 2004.

Ratio 3 is pleased to present Rajkamal Kahlon: Imports and Exports, on view from May 16 to June 13, 2004.

For this body of work, Rajkamal Kahlon has created a series of paintings using Cassell's Illustrated History of India, published in 1875. Employing the book's illustrations as a base, Kahlon paints on the actual book pages, creating a charged, fragmented narrative about Indian history and its colonial past. By unbinding the pages from the book, Kahlon's gouache paintings tell a new story of brutality, power, and the possibilities of survival.

Kahlon's paintings exaggerate the book's original illustrations, highlighting the objectification of the exotic. Kahlon's work questions whether or not opposing forces, such as oppression and liberation, can coexist. Kahlon is interested in the balance between what can be ugly and beautiful at the same time, funny and painful, active and passive. Painted breasts, bandages, mouths, and teeth create an erotic tension. The functions of the body, feeding, lactation, urination, and defecation, become metaphors for the processes of production and consumption and their link to the history of colonization and present globalization.

Born in 1974 in Auburn, CA, Rajkamal Kahlon was raised in Northern California. She received her B.A. in Studio Art from the University of California, Davis in 1996, and an M.F.A. in Painting from the California College of Arts and Crafts in 1999. She received a Summer Fellowship from the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture (1998), was a Fellow in the Whitney Independent Study Program , Whitney Museum of American Art (2001). In the fall of 2004, she will be a Fellow at the Fine Arts Work Center, Provincetown, Massachusetts (2004).

Kahlon was selected as the 2003 Workspace Artist , an Artist-in-Residence program at the Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning, New York (2003), which culminated in a solo exhibition. Her work was included in Unjustified , Apex Art, New York City (2002), AIM 22 , Bronx Museum of the Arts, New York (2002), 637 Running Feet: Black on White Wall Drawings , Queens Museum of Art, New York (2003), and BQE , White Box, New York City (2003). This is Kahlon's first solo exhibition on the West Coast.

Ratio 3 is an access point for contemporary art based in San Francisco. Recent exhibitions outside of San Francisco include We Are Electric (Deitch Projects, New York City) and the forthcoming COLOR WHEEL OBLIVION (Marella Arte Contemporanea, Milan, Italy). Chris Perez is the owner/director of Ratio 3, and previously worked as the curatorial assistant for contemporary art at the Whitney Museum of American Art, helping organize Bitstreams and the 2002 Biennial Exhibition. Prior to that, he worked at the Wattis Institute (CCA) in San Francisco.

Ratio 3: Bringing vastness to the mind.