Kopal Seth: Systematic Chaos

Resident Artist Exhibition

Jul 2nd - Aug 1st, 2021

Kopal Seth’s work addresses Indian cultural history while contemplating the present and the future. Her sculptures suggest the hustle-bustle of the vibrant streets of Indian cities and towns to manifest systematic chaos as well as stillness for the viewer. 

Living far away from home I often feel as though I am watching something through a window/screen. It's a whole different world. Emotional and mentally I am a part of what is happening in India, but I have also built myself a life here in Philadelphia. I imagine most immigrants/expats feel this way. The grid is loosely inspired by the city of Philadelphia, the way it envelopes the gallery space came from my working walks around my neighborhood, seeing many houses enveloped by vines. These grids also create a loose birds eye view of a city, or a town in somewhat abstract arrangement so there can be room for further interpretation. 

Systematic Chaos addresses  the dichotomy that I experience as an Indian living in the United States. This push and pull between modern and traditional, between US and Indian culture was put more in focus during the pandemic.

From America I watched as  the COVID 19 pandemic raged through India, affecting my family and friends. The aesthetically pleasing objects  in these installations were actually born out of  grim conversations I have had with my family back home about their experience with the government and health care system in India during the pandemic. 

My fascination with Windows, walls and corners goes back to my undergrad and painting days. Corners to me feel like safe spaces from which I can peek out at the world, pause, and where I can scout the world out a little Bit to take a moment and understand/ make sense of everything going on. 

During my time in Philadelphia I felt surrounded by windows and grids. My previous work explores the makta form and expanding squares that symbolize the bustle of Indian towns and cities. Within this gallery are the contents of my artistic mind, illustrating how I’ve felt during this Pandemic year in Philadelphia; my mind divided between home and here, made whole through my art practice.